On Tuesdays i want to take a look at some topic making local or international news and give my commentary or share my thoughts or reaction to it and hopefully get some dialogue going with my readers. I am not hugely into politics so this may not be the most in-depth political commentary the world has ever seen and is more likely to look at something with a different take or spin. Let’s see how it goes:
So let me get this straight, I haven’t traditionally been a fan of the idea of a pope as I believe that Jesus is the head of the church and that each of us who choose to follow Him are filled with the Holy Spirit, who acts as our guide and counsellor, and that we should have the church [the people of God] to walk alongside us and help us to live life well. That said I understand a little bit of the history of the catholic church and that having an active pope is a very huge part of the way they live out their faith. So there is [and possibly always will be] a pope.
And to be completely honest, I have never paid the hugest attention to who is pope unless they do something particularly newsworthy or I guess scandalous as to bring them to my attention. The pope has not traditionally appeared on mu radar a whole lot.
Enter the new pope, brought about by the first retiring of a pope in 600 years, and suddenly I am seeing news all over the place. And while I’m sure there might be some scandals and some skeletons with this guy [don’t we all have those?] so far I have really liked what I have seen. I imagine he is pissing off a lot of the traditionalists [hence the title: how dangerous will his Jesus-like moves prove to be in the long term?] but it seems like the things that are doing that are sounding and looking a lot like the kind of stuff Jesus would do. Here are a smattering of them from the local and international news media:
‘Pope Francis has decided not to move into the papal apartment used by Benedict XVI and others before him, preferring instead to stay in a simple suite at a Vatican hotel, a Vatican spokesman said.’ [http://www.cnn.com/2013/03/27/world/europe/vatican-pope/index.html?iid=article_sidebar]
‘Francis, the first Jesuit to assume the papacy, has become widely known for his embrace of simplicity and humility since he became pope. He’s spoken of his desire to see the Roman Catholic Church be a “poor church, for the poor,” and his sermons have focused on the need to look after the needy and sick, as well as the natural world.’ [http://www.cnn.com/2013/03/27/world/europe/vatican-pope/index.html?iid=article_sidebar]
“Francis of Assisi is … someone who turned his back on the wealth of his family and the lifestyle he had, and bonded with lepers and the poor,” said the Rev. Thomas Rosica, the Vatican’s deputy spokesman. “Here’s this pope known for his care for AIDS patients and people who are very sick. Who is known for his concern with single mothers whose babies were refused to be baptized by priests in his diocese.
“He scolded those priests last year and said, ‘How can you turn these people away when they belong to us? ‘”[http://www.cnn.com/2013/03/14/world/pope-5-things/index.html?iid=article_sidebar]
‘When he told his priests Thursday “to go look for the lost sheep,” he added that when they come back, they “better smell like those sheep,” Arroyo said. “He wants them amid the people in the muck of life.”‘ [http://www.cnn.com/2013/03/31/world/europe/vatican-pope-easter]
‘On Holy Thursday, Francis celebrated an unprecedented Mass in a youth prison in Rome in which he washed the feet of 12 inmates including two girls and two Muslims – a ritual seen as a gesture of humility towards the 12 apostles attributed to Jesus.
Previous popes only ever performed the ritual with priests or Catholic laymen.’ [http://news.sky.com/story/1072003/pope-francis-calls-for-korea-reconcilliation]
“That hallmark of humility and simplicity are his personal expressions as pope,” Bunson said. “There is something wonderfully new about him, but he’s also maintaining the teachings of the church in wonderful continuity with the popes who’ve gone before him.” [http://www.cnn.com/2013/03/31/world/europe/vatican-pope-easter]
As long as he keeps directing us towards Jesus, in the way he lives and in the messages he speaks, I think I am going to continue liking him. Let’s close this off with words he spoke that do just that: “Our daily problems and worries can wrap us up in ourselves, in sadness and bitterness, and that is where death is,” he said. “Let the risen Jesus enter your life, welcome him as a friend, with trust: he is life!” [http://www.foxnews.com/world/2013/03/30/pope-presides-over-easter-vigil-service/]
What are your thoughts regarding the new pope?