PopeWatch: What Beautiful Clothes the Emperor is Wearing!

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Tom Hoopes over at National Catholic Register demonstrates why so much of what passes for Catholic journalism in this papacy is worse than useless:

I’ll go further: My vocation, in fact, calls me to defend the Holy Father wherever and however I can.

I freely admit that this is not always easy. I spent a year working on What Pope Francis Really Said, and what a year it was. It was the year of Laudato Si and the synod on the family. I was writing about papal remarks on everything from “Who am I to judge?” and “rabbits” to Zika and Amoris Laetitia.

At first, I hated it. I hated slogging through the Pope’s words at exactly the moment great doubt was being cast on him.

But now, I am so grateful that I did it. I can hardly contain my joy. I discovered a secret I desperately want to share: Far from tearing the Church apart with oafish ambiguity, Pope Francis is building it up with strategic intelligence.

It would take a book to explain what I mean. But suffice it to say that we needn’t either strike down our own shepherd on the one hand or cover up his embarrassment on the other.

What we should do, in fact, is unite around “the perpetual and visible source and foundation of the unity both of the bishops and of the whole company of the faithful,” which, Catechism 882 tells us, is “the Pope, Bishop of Rome and Peter’s successor.”

 

Go here to read the rest.  All together now:

 

 

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16 Comments

  1. From what planet does this guy come?
    .
    “Far from tearing the Church apart with oafish ambiguity, Pope Francis is building it up with strategic intelligence.”

  2. Hoopes failed to add that the Pope is the Vicar of Christ on earth. Jesus Christ is TRUTH and the head of the Catholic Church in heaven, on earth and under the earth, the suffering souls in purgatory who wish they had obeyed God more.

  3. Mainstream Catholic media has wholly discredited itself during this papacy. In the years following my conversion in 2008, I used to rely on outlets like Catholic Answers and EWTN. Now, with a few notable exceptions, I can barely stand to read or listen to any of them.
    .
    But it matters less and less anyway. For the first three years of Francis, up to the promulgation of Amoris Laetitia, I devoted great mental and spiritual effort to trying to understand him and figure out his intentions for the Church. I was pretty certain they were nothing good but still, I’d try to decode his elliptical utterances and weird theology. This caused me a fair amount of stress and anxiety.
    .
    But now that he’s made himself perfectly clear for all who have ears to hear, I no longer feel the need to pay much attention to him or worry about his next wrecking ball of an innovation. We know it won’t be good, whatever it is, and we know he loathes the Church and seeks to reconstruct her in the image of a South American Jesuit-Caudillo, but that knowledge paradoxically brings about a certain amount of peace. The enemy is in plain sight, speaking openly about his intentions, and there’s no longer any reason to pay heed to his yapping quisling defenders in the “conservative” Catholic media.

  4. Don, Hoopes’s article says the following:

    “Many Catholics instinctively dislike the Pope’s style of casual ambiguity. Those who felt awed and grateful watching Pope John Paul II or reading Pope Benedict XVI often feel a little deflated watching Pope Francis. Feeling underwhelmed by the Pope is understandable.”

    If you’d highlighted that, he wouldn’t have come off like a quisling. As for me, I believe Hoopes. If you read an article about what Pope Francis said or wrote, you’ll be disappointed. If you look into it a little, and read the actual words he said, you’ll still be disappointed, but less so. If you dig into it as a full-time researcher, you’ll come away with a different and better opinion.

    Ideally, we’d have a pope who could build up the Church without looking like he’s making oafish pronouncements.

  5. “If you’d highlighted that, he wouldn’t have come off like a quisling.”

    True Pinky but I thought the heart of his point was at the end and that is what I quoted. I do not consider Hoopes a quisling, but merely a Catholic whose understanding of the Church begins and ends with the Pope. That has never been the teaching of Catholicism, but it is a fairly common misunderstanding both within and without the Church.

  6. I don’t know if he thinks that way or not. I don’t recognize the name, and I’m not sure if I’ve read anything else from him. He strikes me as someone whose thinking has been influenced by his research, and not in a positive way. You’re a historian, so you know the type. They delve into a problem so deeply that they lose sight of the big picture. If you write a book about what an ambiguous speaker really said, and do sufficient research to try to pin down every statement, you’re not going to come out of it thinking clearly. I’d have to see a lot more of his stuff to tell if your assessment is fair. I’m not even sure that the term “mainstream Catholic press” has meaning.

  7. “It would take a book to explain what I mean.” Translation: “I’m even more clueless now than when I started.”

  8. ” If you read an article about what Pope Francis said or wrote, you’ll be disappointed. If you look into it a little, and read the actual words he said, you’ll still be disappointed, but less so. If you dig into it as a full-time researcher, you’ll come away with a different and better opinion.
    Ideally, we’d have a pope who could build up the Church without looking like he’s making oafish pronouncements.”

    Though per the link, it seems that these individuals have “researched” fully and have the opinion that his work is poor:

    http://www.catholicherald.co.uk/news/2016/07/18/theologians-amoris-laetitia-needs-clarification/

  9. Thanks Donald for providing additional reason not to read the Register as it only befuddles by trying to straddle the truth of historic Catholic doctrine with the ambiguity of Vatican II interpretations and most recently with the near heresy of Pope Francis. The Church in trying to accommodate to the modern world is rendering itself irrelevant to the teaching of Jesus Christ.

  10. Revelation 22:10-15 Revised Standard Version Catholic Edition (RSVCE)

    10 And he said to me, “Do not seal up the words of the prophecy of this book, for the time is near. 11 Let the evildoer still do evil, and the filthy still be filthy, and the righteous still do right, and the holy still be holy.”

    12 “Behold, I am coming soon, bringing my recompense, to repay every one for what he has done. 13 I am the Alpha and the Omega, the first and the last, the beginning and the end.”

    14 Blessed are those who wash their robes,[a] that they may have the right to the tree of life and that they may enter the city by the gates. 15 Outside are the dogs and sorcerers and fornicators and murderers and idolaters, and every one who loves and practices falsehood.

    Footnotes:

    a. Revelation 22:14 Other ancient authorities read do his commandments

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