- Jan 25, 2020
The current fracas surrounding Benedict XVI and a new book on priestly celibacy is eerily reminiscent of the tempest that erupted in 2003/2004 around St. John Paul II’s alleged endorsement of Mel Gibson’s movie “The Passion of the Christ,” expressed in the infamous soundbite, “It is as it was.”
Perhaps we can’t judge the impact of Pope Francis on politics by the usual measures, because, befitting his Argentinian populist outlook, he’s more interested in horizontal rather than vertical change.
Going forward, in order to claim a halo, any candidate who was in a leadership position in the Church – meaning, usually, a bishop or religious superior – will have to be shown to have had “clean hands” on the abuse scandals.
If the use of the rosary as a devotion fell off at some point in the past, that’s not the case now, according to Gretchen R. Crowe, Our Sunday Visitor’s editorial director for periodicals.
Every pope over the last seven decades has supported nuclear disarmament, so there’s nothing novel in Francis doing the same.
One way the Catholic instinct seeps through in Key West is a tendency among locals to compare the present state of the place unfavorably to a half-remembered, half-imagined past.