Monday, March 11, 2013

The Tasks for the Next Pope (and it won't be me!)

In theory, I could be elected as the next pope (you don't believe it? I am a male Catholic--that's the basic requirement). I want to make it clear right now: no matter how much the cardinals beg or plead, I'm not going to accept the role.

An old friend from Berea College in Central Kentucky has an extraordinary blog. It's called Mike Rivage-Seul's Blog: " . . .about things that matter" ( Mike is a theologian and a former priest. He and his wife Peggy Rivage-Seul are prophetic presences for the Church and for the World.

Today's blog entry lays out some tasks for the new pope, whoever he shall be (and as I said above, it's not going to be me). Here is what Mike writes:

So the cardinals of the church are meeting to elect the next pope. Who cares? The media obviously do. The Catholic Church is getting a lot of air time and ink. But some of us might be caught yawning.
The yawn issues from the fact that the last two disastrous papacies (John Paul II and Benedict XVI) have so tightly packed the College of Cardinals with reactionary clones of themselves that any hope of rescuing the Romans from their deepest crisis since the Reformation seems remote at the very best.
But if there is hope of such rescue it resides in electing a pontiff who will directly address five issues: (1) summoning an ecumenical council, (2) opening priestly ordination to women, (3) abolition of mandatory celibacy for priests, (4) retraction of the prohibition of artificial contraception, and (5) practical adoption of liberation theology and its preferential option for the poor.
Mike expands on all these issues and makes compelling arguments for them. Check out his blog.

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