Pope Francis doubles down on those darn Americans:
BOARD THE PAPAL PLANE (Reuters) – Pope Francis said on Tuesday he prayed that dissent from American Catholic conservatives would not lead to a schism in the Church and that he was willing to listen to critics and make corrections if necessary.
But in frank comments to reporters aboard the plane returning to Rome from a trip to Africa, he said he was not afraid of a schism. Some of his critics had allowed political ideology to infiltrate religious doctrine, he said.
It was the first time Francis has spoken so openly about the possibility of a schism in the 1.3 billion worldwide Roman Catholic Church, albeit in answer to a question.
Francis also implied that some of his critics were hypocrites for accusing him of being “a communist pope” even though he was saying the same things about social issues that had been said by the late Pope John Paul, who many conservatives consider an icon.
Francis has been the butt of criticism from a small but powerful number of American conservatives unhappy with his stands on various theological issues as well as social matters from immigration to climate change.
An American reporter asked him about the attacks from conservative clerics, Catholic television stations and websites in the increasingly polarised U.S. Church. Some have demanded his resignation, saying he is sowing confusion about moral issues, such as homosexuality and divorce.
“I am not afraid of schisms,” Francis said in a 10-minute response, adding that there had been many in the 2,000-year history of the Church.
Go here to read the rest. Let’s unpack this shall we? We have a Pope who seems to believe that all the rest of Church history, teaching and dogma are meaningless, and that he can change whatever he wants willy-nilly, and that if Catholics protest and object they must be aiming at schism. Someone in this Pontificate may be seeking to bring about a schism, but it is not the orthodox critics of Pope Francis.