Gagliarducci sees the Church as currently torn between those two agendas with each side using the Pope’s words to bolster their arguments. While Pope appeals to favor desecularization, going against the grain, and fighting ideological colonization (especially in terms of the family), Gagliarducci thinks the Pope’s notion of “going to the peripheries” has been misinterpreted as seeking to adapt to the pressure exerted by secular trends.
Nowhere has this difference between the two agendas become more problematic than in Germany where Catholic bishops are pursuing what they term “pastoral” solutions to the problems caused by some Church teachings. As Gagliarducci notes, St. John Paul II and Benedict XVI opposed the German bishops concerning their proposed solutions.
But now, as Pope Francis pursues his agenda—whatever it may be—those German “solutions,” Gagliarducci observes, risk going global.
In this regard, Christopher Ferrara at TheRemnant.com lampoons Pope Francis’ encyclical on the environment, Laudato si, providing readers a “Handy Dandy Laudato Si Roadmap.” Of particular interest to The Motley Monk are Ferrara’s nos. 8-12 which illuminate the fuzziness associated with the direction of the Pope’s agenda. Ferrara writes:
8. Talk about the Judeo-Christian “Gospel of Creation”--
be sure to explain why religion is being mentioned!
9. Quote Canticle of Brother Son—leave out serving
omnipotent God and reference to mortal sin and
damnation. (¶ 85)
10. Condemn technological paradigm and misguided
11. Mention “human embryo”—avoid calling embryo person;
relate killing of embryos to mistreating poor and disabled
persons and to inconsistent concern for environment;
avoid condemning abortion as immoral and criminal.
(¶117, 120, 136)
12. Avoid contraception. Avoid abortion for remainder of
encyclical—say something general about “integrity of
human life” and “great values.” (¶ 224)
Agree or disagree with Ferrara’s assessment, Laudato si does appear to be appealing more to the “peripheries”—a secular agenda defined as “closest to contemporary man”—which Gagliarducci notes “might be interpreted as a silent endorsement of the UN development agenda.” The fear is that Pope Francis is implicitly backing this agenda and its ambiguous formula “sexual and reproductive health.” That's not-so-subtle code for the so-called “right” to abortion.
What crucial is not the internecine argument the mainstream media is politicizing between those seeking to change Church teaching in the name of “reform” and those seeking to uphold Church teaching in the name of “tradition.” What is crucial is the faith of the Roman Catholic Church.
But let’s keep the storyline straight: It isn’t "some Church teachings" which are causing problems, but people who oppose those teachings who are causing the problems.
Let the discussion begin…
To read Andrea Gagliarducci’s post, click on the following link:
To read Christopher Ferrara’s post, click on the following link: