Fratelli Tutti, (Brothers All), talks about everyone getting along in this world despite our differences, a sort of man made Shangri-La. Lets forget for a moment about the division in our country, the riots, the looting the property destruction. Those who do that don’t play by the rules or see themselves as humanities brother act out. Islam, besides wanting to kill all non-Muslims, also has the death penalty for apostates. (If we had that I estimate about 2/3 of the hierarchy would qualify for death.) We see irreconcilable differences with the pope here. There are so many beliefs and so much that is culturally diverse around the world that some people just don’t want to get along they just want their way. The idea that we should all get along is a nice one, it is just not a reality this side of heaven.
Further stoking the flames of dissent is the Catholic Church herself, (at least the men who run her). Can Pope Francis be taken seriously when he personally has contributed to the clergy sexual scandal? Are those who have been sexually abused, (mostly males), somehow not brothers? Are they less important than say an Islamic Imam or a Baptist preacher? Feminists are also in an uproar over the title because they feel excluded too.
What is clear is that any moral authority that the pope wielded, (moral authority comes from God not man), he let dissipate. The first and most important thing in getting it back is cleaning up your own house. That of course would be the Church, and that would include the clergy sex scandal and subsequent cover-up. Until that happens his words and thoughts mean nothing. They are just the hollow, meaningless platitudes of an old man. No disrespect is meant…leading by example is what the Church needs. That is what the world needs.
The Bride of Christ has been battered from her beginnings as the Catholic Church. She has been battered both from the outside and also from the inside. We all have to remember the words of St. Paul; “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever. Do not be carried away by all kinds of strange teaching.”