Tag Archives: Compassion

Brotherly Love

You go girl! With all due respect to those who disagree with Pope Francis’ recent comments on gays, abortion and other liberal social issues, you should remember that God commands brotherly love:

Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God; and every one that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God.

1 John 4:7

The Pope is right to criticize that the Church Is too ‘Obsessed’ With Gays, Abortion and Birth Control . Make no doubt about it. The Pope is still far from blessing gay marriage or supporting other liberal social issues. But what he is saying is good news to progressives who feel that you can be believe in God without agreeing with every church policy. In short you can disagree without being disagreeable. Pretty good advice, huh?

Pope Francis isn’t just side stepping the tough issues, either. By focusing his attention on mercy and humility, he appeals on everyone to reject narrow-mindedness in favor of forgiveness. To ostracize anyone who pursues a loving and virtuous existence  – regardless of personal circumstance or sexual preference – is a rather un-christian-like thing to do.

Whether you are gay person trying to just live a “normal life” or a woman facing a difficult decision regarding pregnancy and family planning, there are plenty of difficult challenges to overcome even without the constant judging of others. Let’s leave judgement up to a “higher authority”. Mormon dance champion Benji Schwimmer makes a pretty good case that you can be both gay and a good Christian, if the Church would just let it be. I’m not mormon, but I like his attitude.

Rather than battling against our neighbor, believers of all faiths should embrace what is good in modern society and find ways to promote diversity and inclusion within our churches and public institutions.

Let’s move on, brother.

 

Rocky Road Ahead

As Vatican reporter John Thavis points out, this week marks a “curious milestone” for Pope Francis as he surpasses the 34 days in office that was the tenure of Pope John Paul I before his surprising death in 1978, making way for the remarkable Pope John Paul II.

Elected presumably as a reformer, there is no doubt that Pope Francis has plenty of stumbling stones to watch out for on the lonely road ahead. Financial scandals at the Vatican, continuing scrutiny of sexual misconduct in priesthoods around the world and constant rumors of corruption back in Rome make for a heavy cross to bear on a journey that – one can only hope – leads beyond the necessary, but painful introspection.

As we look forward to the road ahead for Pope Francis, we must pray that he is a capable and enduring reformer, one who can set the sights of the catholic church on the higher and most important goals of peace, compassion and humanity for all people on God’s green earth.  That is the Church that many people are praying for.

So with Pope Francis now more than a month in office, I pray that he continue on a humble and righteous path that never loses sight of the ambitious long term objectives.