Progressives and the problem of being more Francis than the pope

In many ways, I’ve been more intrigued by responses to Querida Amazonia than I have been by the document itself.

Pope Francis is pictured as Cardinal Lorenzo Baldisseri, secretary-general of the Synod of Bishops, Brazilian Cardinal Claudio Hummes, relator general of the synod, and Bishop Fabio Fabene, undersecretary of the Synod of Bishops, talk at the start of the final session of the Synod of Bishops for the Amazon at the Vatican Oct. 26, 2019. (CNS photo/Paul Haring) .

The highly anticipated and now much discussed post-synodal apostolic exhortation Querida Amazonia struck me as mostly workmanlike. That’s not to dismiss the importance of the text, or to overlook significant passages. Nor is it to suggest that I disagree strongly with anything much that is actually in the text, which I see as a sort of strategic (if sincere) pause in a now wearying series of Synods and ecclesial skirmishes.

I confess I found it curious that a document so focused on what is sacred in creation and so cosmic about the Catholic Faith not only failed to draw upon a stunning Christological passage such as Colossians 1:15-20, but hardly quotes or alludes to Scripture at all (I count three short quotes in the 16,000 word document). And yet there are copious amounts of poetry, and a quote: “Only poetry, with its humble voice, will be able to save this world.” I love great poetry as much or more than most, but even I question such poetic overreach.

In many ways, I’ve been more intrigued by responses to Querida Amazonia than I have been by the document itself.

Of course, it is not the absence of Scripture that caught the attention of most readers, but the absence of open support for relaxation on the Latin rite disciplines regarding married men being ordained priests. Writing in The Guardian, Catherine Pepinster, former editor of The Tablet, expressed her clear frustration, saying that “Francis dealt the liberals a blow,” having “turned down the opportunity to recommend married priests as the solution to a shortage of priests in the Amazon region – despite the wishes of Amazon bishops. Those bishops had also called for the church to let women serve within the clergy, but Francis offered no such change.” In doing so, she concludes, “The man from the ends of the Earth has proved to be a disruptive figure in ways that no one expected.”

Fr. Thomas Reese, S.J., insisted that he was disappointed but not surprised by the exhortation, correctly noting (in my estimation), “Francis did not say yes to married priests, but neither did he really say no.” But he later lets out some disgruntled progressivism when he writes, “His arguments against women deacons were disappointing and patriarchal. … He calls for more recognition of women’s roles in the church — and I agree — but why not go all the way and ordain women?” The answer to that questions, says Reese, is found in the “synodal process”, and he finds solace in thinking Francis has eschewed the methods of “previous popes” who said, “My way or the highway.”

But columnist Jamie L. Manson, also writing in the National Catholic Reporter, is having none of it, flatly stating: “Perhaps no one was less surprised last week than I was when Pope Francis’ Querida Amazonia showed no openness to a female diaconate, and instead was laden with the language of gender complementarity in its discussion of women.” She goes on to suggest that while the Holy Spirit had spoken clearly at the Amazonian synod, the men involved were not listening closely enough. She quotes Archbishop Thomas Wenski of Miami as remarking, “The synod is about the action of the Holy Spirit and discernment of the Holy Spirit. And if there is no Holy Spirit, there is no discernment.” Manson then says, with obvious irritation:

But I was at the Synod of Bishops for the Amazon, and it seemed to me and many others who were listening that the Holy Spirit was speaking loudly and clearly, particularly on the issue of empowering women.

Massimo Faggioli, who often flirts with a hermeneutic of discontinuity, is equally agitated, brusquely condemning the document for committing that most (ahem) egregious sin: upholding “more a pre-conciliar than conciliar or post-conciliar theology of the ordained ministry” and putting, as did John Paul II, “great emphasis on what the laity can do works to preserve the clerical system just as it is.” It is apparent that Faggioli views the exhortation as a sort of betrayal, concluding, “The moment is a crossroads for the Francis pontificate.”

Perhaps the most interesting, even surprising, commentary from the the opposite end of the spectrum came from Cardinal Gerhard Müller, let go by Francis as Prefect of the Congregation of the Doctrine of the Faith in the summer of 2017, who described the pope’s exhortation as “a Document of Reconciliation” and says, “The Pope does not want to fuel existing political, ethnic and inner-Church conflicts and conflicts of interest, but rather to overcome them.” He then insists that this reconciling approach be the “hermeneutic” that should guide all readers of good will, and that this hermeneutic “is not characterized by dialecticism, but on the basis of analogy.”

That remark is notable because Fr. Antonio Spadaro, S.J., widely recognized as one of Pope Francis’ closest and most trusted collaborators, says the exact opposite in a lengthy commentary at La Civiltà Cattolica, arguing that Francis’ approach to conflicting views and solutions is to engage a dialectical approach that seeks a “superior synthesis”:

This dialectical approach to reality is a criterion of action for Francis, a fundamental element for pastoral discernment: not to annul one dialectical pole in favor of the other, but to find a superior solution that does not lose the energy and strength of the elements that are in opposition. … Francis’ criterion is truly fundamental and makes explicit his way of proceeding, which is not to annul the conflict, but to assume it and overcome it in a superior synthesis.

He further writes, “The key word of the ecclesial dream is inculturation. Francis repeats it about twenty times.” Spadaro’s reading is a strong one, as Evangelii Gaudium, Francis’ 2013 exhortation on evangelization, strongly insists on forms of “synthesis”. There, Francis states, “The challenge of an inculturated preaching consists in proclaiming a synthesis, not ideas or detached values. Where your synthesis is, there lies your heart. The difference between enlightening people with a synthesis and doing so with detached ideas is like the difference between boredom and heartfelt fervour” (par 143).

This is echoed in Querida Amazonia, which states, “Indeed, the kerygma and fraternal charity constitute the great synthesis of the whole content of the Gospel, to be proclaimed unceasingly in the Amazon region” (par 65) and:

For the Church to achieve a renewed inculturation of the Gospel in the Amazon region, she needs to listen to its ancestral wisdom, listen once more to the voice of its elders, recognize the values present in the way of life of the original communities, and recover the rich stories of its peoples. (par 70)

This emphasis on inculturation brings us to a final commentator. Writing for The Tablet, papal biographer Austen Ivereigh takes a tack that parallels Spadaro, arguing that “in a context of polarisation in the Church the mistake is to try to resolve it by allowing one side to defeat the other. Rather, by patiently and attentively holding together the polarity – positions that pull in a different direction – the leader allows for the possibility of a ‘third way’ that the Holy Spirit offers.” Put simply, Ivereigh sees Querida Amazonia as an example of Francis’ genius at synthesizing conflicting visions and approaches.

He indicates that Francis was frustrated with the focus on the so-called “viri probati—a frustration that Francis shared directly with some American bishops. Of course, the push for a relaxation on priestly celibacy did not come out of the blue, nor did it arrive lately; it had been a focus right from the start of the Amazonian synod, which seemed to many, including myself, to have all of the organic spontaneity of a root canal.

Regardless, it is Ivereigh, in presenting his apologia for Francis’ approach and text, who makes what is to me the most startling and problematic of statements:

To focus too much on internal church questions, however, is to  miss the real point of the Pope’s remarkable exhortation. The mission comes before the Church, which is a means not an end. The mission is the inculturation of the Gospel. As the Gospel spreads, the hermeneutic (the way the world is seen) changes. For Francis, the battleground is between two hermeneutics.

This is troubling, as it asserts, quite blatantly, a very faulty ecclesiology. In short: the mission does not come before the Church, because the Church—the Mystical Body of Christ and the Household of God—is herself the mission in this world; the Church is not a means to an end, but is, as the Catechism states, “[T]he goal of all things”; the Catechism goes even further: “The world was created for the sake of the Church” (par 760); thirdly, the mission is not inculturation of the Gospel, but the Gospel, period:

The Lord’s missionary mandate is ultimately grounded in the eternal love of the Most Holy Trinity: “The Church on earth is by her nature missionary since, according to the plan of the Father, she has as her origin the mission of the Son and the Holy Spirit.” The ultimate purpose of mission is none other than to make men share in the communion between the Father and the Son in their Spirit of love. (CCC, 850)

More to this: “Just as God’s will is creation and is called ‘the world,’ so his intention is the salvation of men, and it is called ‘the Church'” (par 760), for the Church is “the world reconciled” (par 845).

Ivereigh’s deficient ecclesiology is certainly utilitarian; it also smacks of what Pope Pius XII, in Mystici Corporis Christi, called “popular naturalism”, which “sees and wills to see in the Church nothing but a juridical and social union” (par 9). It certainly falls well short of the grand—yes, cosmic—vision articulated so well in Vatican II’s Lumen Gentium.

Which brings me to this conclusion: If Ivereigh has correctly identified and articulated “the real point of the Pope’s remarkable exhortation,” then we will soon be wishing to go back to arguments over celibacy and the priesthood, which is relatively small potatoes compared to such a woeful understanding of the Church.

On the other hand, if Ivereigh is wrong about this bold claim, then why should he be taken seriously as a theological guide to the thought of Pope Francis?

The progressive German bishops thought they could run ahead of Francis and pursue a “synodal path”, apparently confident there would be no repercussions. Many of the bishops at the Amazonian synod thought they could push for married priests and perhaps even deaconesses, assuming Francis was happy to oblige. More than a few commentators believed Francis was going to check off on all of their pet progressive causes, seeing him as a fellow ideologue. And many obviously feel the need to explain why Francis didn’t do what they wanted or expected, even though he didn’t do what they wanted and expected. What all of them seem to have overlooked is that Francis—for good and for ill—is his own man and is, I’m quite convinced, more concerned with loyalty to him than to this cause or that project, no matter how sympathetic he might be to those causes and projects. It turns out that being more Francis than the pope is a good way to be reminded that Francis is the pope.


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About Carl E. Olson 1141 Articles
Carl E. Olson is editor of Catholic World Report and Ignatius Insight. He is the author of Did Jesus Really Rise from the Dead?, Will Catholics Be "Left Behind"?, co-editor/contributor to Called To Be the Children of God, co-author of The Da Vinci Hoax (Ignatius), and author of the "Catholicism" and "Priest Prophet King" Study Guides for Bishop Robert Barron/Word on Fire. He is also a contributor to "Our Sunday Visitor" newspaper, "The Catholic Answer" magazine, "The Imaginative Conservative", "The Catholic Herald", "National Catholic Register", "Chronicles", and other publications.

43 Comments

  1. In my book, the “progressive” wing of the Catholic Church is synonymous with the homosexual lobby of the Catholic Church.

      • This article is so all over the place. A little of this and that. Just like the masonic francis. Patiently biding their time testing the waters and gaining traction. Yes to women priests,no to women priests. Leave the door open to this and that. The way masons operate. They have commentators playing their game and helping them along. Well are you or are you not opposed to women priesrs? Women deaconess? State your position. Francis surely wont. Neither will you.

    • In my book, ‘progressive’ as an adjective to refer to those who seek to wreck the church is a complete misnomer. They regressives. Regressing to a time before Christ.

      • I must disagree with your theology. Jesus was a reactionary. What He emphasized is the immutability of truth because it reflects the perfect unchanging mind of God. He was/is the opposite of progressives because although discovery in such things as science exists, we can only discover what God already knows. Those who heard Him were able to understand Him because He spoke timeless innate self-evident truths about how we should order our lives together. God does not deprive us of essential moral truth and leave such matters to some time in the future to be discovered. “How was it from the beginning” was a common refrain from Jesus. Hard truths are never new. They are hard because they are old. They are an affront to our vanities.

  2. We will have to wait and see what becomes of Francis latest documents. It’s ambiguities can be used for much devilishness. And probably will in my opinion.

    • Masons are patient. They move slowly as to gain traction. The push back against the amazon synod made the take a step back. Now they have introduced lay led parishes where there is a lack of priests. Step forward. Using this scamdemic to ban communion on tongue. Big step forward. Hard to imagine catholics still musing with this masonic pope and his minions. Masons dont mind skeptics. Philosophical journalists dont bother them.

  3. “ And if there is no Holy Spirit, there is no discernment.” Manson then says, with obvious irritation:”

    “It is not possible to have Sacramental Communion without Ecclesial Communion”, due to The Unity Of The Holy Ghost, For It Is “Through Christ, With Christ, And In Christ, In The Unity Of The Holy Ghost”, that Holy Mother Church, outside of which, there is no Salvation, due to The Unity Of The Holy Ghost, exists.

    Thus we can know through both our Catholic Faith and reason, there is no “third way”, when it comes to being fully converted to The Way, The Truth, And The Life (Light) Of Perfect Love. Those that have been Baptized Catholic, and affirm that God, The Most Holy And Undivided Blessed Trinity, Through The Unity Of The Holy Ghost, Is The Author Of Love, Of Life, And Of Marriage, and those who have been Baptized Catholic and deny that God, The Most Holy And Undivided Blessed Trinity, Through The Unity Of The Holy Ghost, Is The Author Of Love, Of Life, And Of Marriage, because they desire to Render onto Caesar or themselves, what Belongs to God, cannot both be following The Christ.

    Dear Blessed Mother Mary, Destroyer Of All Heresy, Who, Through Your Fiat, Affirmed The Filioque, And The The Fact That There Is Only One Son Of God, One Word Of God Made Flesh, One Lamb Of God Who Can Take Away The Sins Of The World, Our Only Savior, Jesus The Christ, Hear Our Prayers.

    It is not possible for a counterfeit church to exist within Christ’s One, Holy, Catholic, And Apostolic Church, due to The Unity Of The Holy Ghost.

    One cannot synthesis The Word Of God with that which is anti Christ.

  4. As was the case with Paul6, so it is with Francis. What does it really matter what he speaks or writes? Simply watch how he governs. During and after Paul6 and HV, we have 80% of Catholic couples using the Pill. Why, because Paul refused to punish the priest and bishop offenders, and so who can be surprised by the result? Francis is to the left of Paul, and under his Vatican, if he survives a few more years, there will be married priests,—what the heck, what is more of a problem, married priests or gay priests? 35% of our priests are gay! With Francis, there will be women deacons or even woman priests in Germany; such is the way of schismatics, who will always have their way, unless they are punished. And who will punish them? Francis? Never. He fired Mueller and Burke, he will never punish Marx, because Francis is a man of the left. Ignore what Francis says, watch how he governs

  5. Could it be possible that this synod’s greatest service is to expose that which lies in the hearts of men? May God give us the strength to do His will.

    • I agree with you. If we are to progress to the promised land, the iniquity of Amorites er I mean the Church must reach its fullness. Under this Pope we are galloping towards that.

  6. I am rather skeptical about this. On the one hand people are using this as a “victory” celebration against the “progressives.” I think people have perhaps been sucked into a trap- that the bad things we thought might happen did not, so therefore we can go ahead and accept the apostolic exhortation and the other bad stuff found in there. This includes the fact that other ideas advanced in it will probably be used to advance issues like married priests or deaconesses down the road, e.g., synodality or inculturation will be used to introduce them at the level of bishop’s conferences. We already have indication of this from Francis’ right hand men and presenters of the document: the final report of the synod must be given some sort of authority, such issues are still on the table. It would be very naive to think that the likes of Spadaro, Archbishop Fernandez, Baldisarri are not privy to what Francis wants, and of course, Francis allows them to say what they do. And why would Francis use the usual ambiguity that still exists if he was closing the door on certain things? Why would he continue the “study” into the possibility of ordaining deaconesses? As one example from the past: remember when Amoris L. came out and there was official denial, including by Francis, that it allowed for communion for the D & R, and people were relieved? And look what eventually happened. We should also know Francis’s M.O. by now- he avoids directly getting his hands dirty by not explicitly approving something but introduced it indirectly and through others/at lower levels.

  7. Thank you for your insightful treatment of a confusing document, Mr. Olson.

    The other reactions I’ve seen have reminded me of a badly beaten dog cravenly wagging its tail in order to curry favor when the beatings momentarily stop.

    That Fr. Bergoglio is more Francis than pope is itself a useful hermeneutic. However, allow me to venture that it does a grave disservice to Francis’ namesake, the Poverello, whom this Francis in no way resembles.

  8. Good overview, cause to be hopeful [for a first timer since 2013]. Although [doesn’t a condition inevitably follow] “The mission comes before the Church, which is a means not an end. For Francis, the battleground is between two hermeneutics” (Ivereigh). Although Ivereigh doesn’t deny the Church as mission he suggests by theological juggling an epochal end game to change the mission itself. In effect to change the Church itself. If anyone knows the mind of the Pontiff besides the Holy Spirit it’s Austen Ivereigh biographer and longtime devotee. Discomfort is shared because there is an apparent genius pattern [vague wispy difficult to nail down] that should underlie a cognoscenti’s wary concern. Although the facts where we are now plainly speak to an End Game. Although lest I fall into the muddy pit of those who are more Francis than the pope [in a converse sense] it’s a good way to be reminded that Francis is the pope.

  9. Archbishop Thomas Wenski of Miami repeated that the Holy Spirit did speak : He said NO to women Sacred Orders for the Church. He did not say “ maybe or could be” in the future. Amen. …..

  10. Pope Francis – ‘ his own man ‘ or rather a man of God , that desires to see that the whole world get to see and love The Father , in holy and compassionate figures , es. in The Church , knows the responsibility , in love , to be a blessing , including to the existing married clergy while blessing the holiness and power to be bestowed upon The Church esp. through celibacy as well .
    The role of the influence of Freemasonry , with its oaths to pagan gods as being a factor in the financial scandals is also the likely realm that also underlie much of the divisions and rivalries in other areas too .
    One such pagan god , as in the mockery against the holiness and oneness in The Trinity , that is celebrated today by millions ( articles on line ) could help to highlight the holds of the various evils in many lives too – scorn and rebellion against The Father , carnal fire as the ruling force etc : .
    Amazon as an area that too would have similar entities and The Church getting help and guidance of those gifted in ministry of deliverance to help persons and cultures to be set free , not just in Amazon but every area afflicted by syncretism –
    Holy Father knows that singing with The Mother , ‘set as an army in battle array ‘,
    one can keep a smile and the heart of a Father , that words may not take root much in many hardened hearts but that lullabies might remove enough of that hardness for the rest to take root .

    Glory be !

  11. I am most interested in your comparison of analogy and dialectic. Cardinal Muller seeems to be hopeful that this exhortation comports with an authentic spiritual sense of interpretaion of scripture and doctrine. However, the dialectic approach sets, as you indicate, two opposing or competing poles against each other which once they meet (in synod supposedly) a new idea or spirit emerges as a synthesis of new or (for Francis) “original” (going back to our origins) belief. There appear to be two problems with this dialetic method. The first is that it assumes that disunity is a good which brings about unity. This presupposition goes against the very grain of the innate unity that should always exist in the Holy Spirit and in its Body the Church (i.e. if believers are at such odds with each other then perhaps they are not in the Spirit to begin with). Second, the dialectic method appears to be be more psychological and emotional than spiritual. It is more about thoughts and feelings than about the Spirit in which there should exist no opposites even within the various gifts of the Holy Spirit which should be united in the one Body (if it is about “spirit” at all it is more likely about the “world spirit” in contention with the Holy Spirit). Lastly, there was once perhaps a proper dialectic that existed. This was mostly political (in the best and classical sense) because it was social and reasonable. Different political parties could argue and then each received something of what they were looking for. The polarity though has grown ever more distant and those who continue to propose dialecticism as a solution are going to tear the country and the Church apart. One side needs to win and it must be the one that is in and with the Spirit of Christ. May we win with grace and blessing not with hatred and injury.

  12. Thank you for the article, brother Carl! What does it mean, as the article says, “to be more Francis than the Pope”? Jesus said, “You shall know them by their fruits [works]”, (Matthew 7:16) Notice how He never mentioned “by their words” in that warning? Who is it that Francis and his personality-worshipping supporters are trying to empower? Are they trying to empower Eve before the Fall or Eve after the Fall? Are they trying to empower the Eves refusing Jesus or the Eves surrendered to Jesus and who have SO VERY STRONGLY supported the True Church for 2,000 years?

    Are they trying to empower the holy Catholic women of the Church or the socialist, abortion-approving, homosexuality-promoting, ultra-liberal women in the Church? It all points to an Un-Catholic push to use radical, self-absorbed, power-hungry women into entitled, fanatical, never-ending “empowerment”. Aren’t they saying now that “the future is female”? The modern empowerment of women today is EXCLUSIVELY for SINFUL EVE and has brought untold corruption, the glorification of sin and insanity, and the killing of unborn babies in a massive scale. It’s the Book of Genesis all over again and the push is further down bottomless suffering and darkness.

    Why did Satan attack and tempt Eve first? Was she the weakest? Not at all!! He did so because women are indeed the MOST powerful gender and, given that all power must have very strict limits, as absolute power corrupts absolutely, Satan offered Eve Absolute Power (“… you will be like gods…”) therefore bringing Hell to Earth, and is doing so AGAIN today.

    The demonic empowerment of Deluded Eve (women) leads to the demonic empowerment of Deluded Adam (men), the creators of all false religions, the corrupt elements in all cultures and purely human, delusional ideologies. The “inculturation” that Francis proposes has ALREADY been happening in the Church for 2,000 years. Anyone who attends a Holy Mass in Africa, etc. can attest to that. So, what is Francis proposing now as the new-and-improved, earth-shaking, fabulous, poetic “inculturation”? Given that Christianity is the Absolute Supreme Society and Culture (Ephesians 2:19-20) brought to Earth by God Incarnate Himself, what other “culture(s)” must we integrate with according to him? A little “sign of the times” is in order.

    A recent A&E TV documentary, “Jonestown: The Women Behind The Massacre”, shows how Jim Jones could not have organized and completed the mass suicide all by himself without the very fanatical, ultra-cold hearted, aiding, abetting, careful planning and execution of the plan provided by the 4 women in his inner circle. It shows how a leader corrupts followers and how the adoration of the fiercely deluded female followers further corrupts the leader!! It should have been called: “Genesis Again in Guyana”. We must not be servile to Pope Francis or any Pope as Jesus is our Supreme Leader and Pope, and, by all appearances, Francis wants a “new” (recycled) Protestant style, autocratic, Papacy right on the shoulders of deluded activist women and ungodly, pagan-to-the-core cultures. Let’s empower the Virgin Mary and all women, men and all aspects of cultures that in some way follow and imitate HER, just like The New Eve followed and imitated ONLY Jesus!!

  13. Amazing how the Holy Spirit is speaking boldly when its about taking a wrecking ball to the teaching of the Church and yet the Holy Spirit was not speaking when its about being faithful to the Tradition that has been passed on by the Apostles.

    A Spirit was in operation at the Synod alright. But it is NOT the Holy Spirit.

  14. Species that do not reproduce face extinction. Reading CWR points to a species (i.e. Bahhumbug Traditionalists) as thoroughly sterile. While it is obvious you celebrate your freedom to cast aspersions, denigrate the Holy Father 25/8, and otherwise make Pride your cappa magna, it is curious as to when you might practice humility, introspection and count the number of your offspring.

    Nah, we didnt think so either

    Carry on!

    • Actually, it is the regressives, the leftists like you who do not reproduce since you support contraception, abortion and the abomination that is homosexuality.

      The traditionalist are the ones having babies. They are the ones who see children as a gift from God. Even regressive religious orders are dying and the traditional orders are thriving.

      So there you are. Your group is the one getting extinct. And this is God’s mercy

      • Peter Santos,
        Yes. Traditional Catholics are among those who are increasing in numbers.
        I don’t know of any liberal denomination that’s not greying and shrinking in membership.
        Reproduction is key but retention is important also. Catholics need to work on fellowship and providing a real sense of community.

  15. I hold many so called “Conservatives”(even thought I am one) and all Progressives in equal contempt these days. The Progressives still don’t get the fact the Holy Spirit preserves the Church so there should be no doubt that even if Pope Francis in his heart of hearts is so left wing theologically as to make Hans Kung look like Ratzinger the Holy Spirit and Divine Providence will protect the Church and mitigate any damage. Thus I hold them in contempt for their faithlessness. Ironically I hold many so called “conservatives” for the same reason.

    The Pope hasn’t changed doctrine. We should rejoice not kvetch. Why is anybody surprised?

    PS Good analysis Carl. Fair and balanced.

  16. Being “more Francis than the Pope” is obviously a problem. But this is so because being as much Francis as the Pope is already a problem. And the fundamental problem is the Francis who is actually the Pope.

  17. If the “Holy Spirit was speaking clearly at the Synod” as the usual gang of disgruntled Catholics insist, how come the Holy Spirit doesn’t give a crap about children buried alive in the Amazonian paradise?

  18. This article is so all over the place. A little of this and that. Just like the masonic francis. Patiently biding their time testing the waters and gaining traction. Yes to women priests,no to women priests. Leave the door open to this and that. The way masons operate. They have commentators playing their game and helping them along. Well are you or are you not opposed to women priesrs? Women deaconess? State your position. Francis surely wont. Neither will you.

    • Really? How is it “all over the place”? And why would you have reason to question my stance on ordaining women when I’ve written numerous pieces against such a thing? Or perhaps you aren’t familiar with the hundreds of articles, reviews, and posts I’ve written over the past 20 years?

      “Neither will you.” Slander. Educate yourself.

      • You dont pholosophize with a francis. You stand firmyl and resolutesly against him. Educate yourself about his sordid history in argetina. How he handed over priests to be tortured. How he was complicent in the extermination of 30000 student activists. Tell the mothers and grandmothers of argetina to read your many articles. I wouldnt waste my time.

        • The problem is the Internet, not pope Francis. Everything the pope teaches simply reiterates scripture, Church teaching and the councils of the Church. The problem is that people aren’t reading the Bible, instead they are reading the Internet and the countless talking heads interpreting and misrepresenting what he says. Much like people take the same Bible and misinterpret it in a thousand different ways, even though it is the Word of God. Behind all. The misinformation, defamation, calumny and slander is the devil, who is busy tempting and putting thoughts in the minds of people who unwittingly become the devil’s agents on earth to spread lies and half truths against the Vicar of Christ. What do you expect.

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