April 14, 2007


A Step Backward for Pope Benedict? (Jeff Israely, 4/13/07, TIME)

Eighteen months ago, one Rome-based progressive cleric had said he was "surprised to see that [Benedict] seems to be open to hear new ideas." But today, the same priest is disappointed. There has been no sign of any of the hoped-for reforms: overturning the ban on communion for divorced and remarried Catholics, reconsidering the celibacy requirement for priests, allowing gays in seminaries, or a softening of the condom ban to allow for distribution in AIDS-ravaged Africa. The release last month of the Pope's final document on what had seemed to be a convivial and intellectually open October 2005 bishops' meeting on the Eucharist is a good example of the Pontiff's approach. According to a senior Church official who participated: "He took all that debate of the Synod, and then gave us a document that simply defends the status quo." This same official acknowledges a bit of past excessive optimism on Benedict: "People were hoping that with his intellectual acumen and understanding of theology, he'd be in a position to make some of these changes. Unfortunately, at this point, I don't think we'll see any of them."

You pretty much have to be an intellectual to believe that the answer to that equation is discarding morality.

Posted by Orrin Judd at April 14, 2007 6:46 AM

"allowing gays in seminaries"?

My understanding is that there is in fact de facto homosexualist control of a number of seminaries, and that it's a cause of both the decline in orders and the pederasty problem.

Posted by: Jorge Curioso at April 14, 2007 8:50 AM

It is a terrible shock that the Roman Catholic Church would choose tradition and timelessness over the dictates of current fashion.

In Bizzaro World, that is.

Posted by: Mikey [TypeKey Profile Page] at April 14, 2007 12:08 PM

I miss Harry when it comes to posts like this!

Posted by: Dave W at April 14, 2007 3:08 PM

I suppose it should surprise me that there are clerics concerned that the Church isn't worldly enough - though of course it does not.

Posted by: John Barrett Jr. at April 14, 2007 4:32 PM