Hey you cool cats and kittens, haven’t you heard the news? The times they are a-changin’ in the Church. The Eternal Bride of Christ and Bark of Saint Peter is finally casting off its irrelevant dusty, musty 2000-year-old moral teachings on things like the grave sinfulness of abortion, contraception, and homosexual activity, at last seeing the light proclaimed by the wise luminaries in Hollywood and the secular media.
Everybody’s now free to commit sodomy and slice and dice babies all they like without fear of hellfire and loss of Eternal Salvation.
The Catholic Church now realizes it must get over its ancient sexual hang-ups and get with the current liberal zeitgeist, or else be swept into the dustbin of history.
Freed from its archaic obsessions with sex and the sanctity of human life, the Church is at last free to focus exclusively on the issues that really matter, like gun control and global warming.
Hey, don’t look at me like that, Da Freakin’ Pope himself said so!
Or, at least that’s the impression the casual reader will get from reading the brouhaha breathlessly reported by the AP and others in the “mainstream” media concerning Pope Francis’ recent remarks in an interview with an Italian Jesuit magazine.
he AP dutifully recorded the various gushings of an assortment of liberal “Catholic” advocates, as well as Hollywood celebs (including Jane Fonda “who said the Pope “loves the poor and hates dogma” and Chris Rock, who tweeted that the Pope “may be the greatest man alive” regarding Francis’s spectacular wisdom in allegedly leading the Church to embrace the Hollywood set’s social values). (As we all know, the opinions of comedians, Hollywood actors, rappers, and such are of infinitely greater importance than those of us mere mortals in mundane lines of work – especially on matters of Faith and Morals.)
The AP story was linked to on a conservative website with the shocking headline, “Pope Francis says Church Obsessed with Homosexuality and Abortion.”
Of course (if you actually bother to read the fine print), Pope Francis in reality said nothing of the sort. His words were essentially about the importance of Christ-like charity and mercy towards the sinner, summed up in the Church’s age old admonition to “hate the sin and love the sinner” (a concept of which the modern world is utterly clueless,) and that the Church is not in the business of judging the state of individual souls. After all, without charity as St. Paul declared, without love, we are but a “noisy gong and a clanging cymbal.”
The Pope did not declare any change in the Church’s 2000-year-old moral teachings regarding the grave immorality of the sins of abortion, homosexual activity, or contraception, nor did he declare such doctrines irrelevant – much less that he “hates dogma.” In fact, Pope Francis stated that he was simply teaching what the Catechism teaches (which clearly states that homosexuality is “objectively disordered” and sodomy gravely sinful, but also that homsosexual persons should be treated with respect and compassion).
Mainstream media reports on the Pope’s remarks were careful to emphasize the alleged “sharp break” between him and his predecessor, that awful meanie homophobe Benedict XVI. Thus, the story was woven into its standard narrative myth of Loving Progressive Catholics vs. those horrible phariseeical Conservative Catholics, who impose rigid dogma by day and bugger altar boys by night. (Never mind the inconvenient fact that most of the vile and disgraceful sexual abuse and cover-up were conducted by liberal and heterodox clergy, including ultra-libs Cardinal Mahoney and Archbishop Weakland).
While this is yet another example of media distortion, and will likely have little effect on the faith of solidly orthodox Catholics, it has the potential for widespread destructive effects.
I’m afraid it may have a “Spirit of Vatican II”-type effect. I’m referring here not to the actual black-and-white words of the documents produced by that Council, but that foggy, ethereal undead wraith which perpetually haunts the halls of liberal “Catholicism,” and has been invoked to justify every manner of heresy and liturgical abuse, and has declared everything existing in the Church prior to the mid-sixties to be null and void. (That unholy ghost is actually close kin to that other liberal American horror, the constantly-mutating monstrosity known as “the Living Constitution.” “Coming soon to your local drive-in, Twin Terrors Double Feature: The Spirit of Vatican II and Night of the Living Constitution!”)
Liberal pro-abortion and pro-homosexual “Catholic” dissidents will (as they already have begun) claim that they have the full blessing and approval of the Pope and Rome, and declare the Church’s moral teachings to be discarded by the Church, while pro-life Catholics and those who publicly uphold the Church’s moral teachings will be denounced and derided by liberal clergy as troglodyte throw-backs opposed to the Church’s new progressive teachings.
Nothing really new here, but this will likely spread further confusion among the ill-informed pew-sitters (or as Rush Limbaugh would say, “low-information Catholics”) who are too ignorant to know better, and too lazy to learn the truth for themselves. (“What, I thought the Church got rid of all those old teachings about gays and abortion!”)
While the Pope’s interview and subsequent media distortion may win him the approval of the Jane Fondas of the world (though only a spectacular idiot of Hanoi Jane’s caliber could read him as “hating dogma.”), it will do nothing to win over conservative Protestants and Orthodox concerned with actually following Biblical Christian morality, and will only further drive away “Rad-trads” convinced the Vatican has fallen into the clutches of the Beast.
While I believe the Pope’s message has been grossly distorted by the media, his words are ambiguous enough to lead to some unnecessary confusion and misinformation. For this reason, the Pope needs to choose his very words carefully in interviews and such with the media – being mindful that most “journalists” today are not unbiased seekers and reporters of truth, but a ravenous pack of wolves and brood of vipers who will distort every word to promote an ideological agenda 100% at odds with the teachings of the Church.
While it’s right to promote love and charity, moral teaching must be made clear more than ever in this time of lies and confusion. Truth is worth nothing without charity, but true charity does not neglect the truth.