Paging the Codgitator

…But I was just lambasted for…criticizing Pope Francis.

That’s right. I frequent a writer’s forum, and they had an online Catholics writing group, which of course I joined. There, I said this in a discussion on Pope Francis. In context, I’m replying to a woman who liked the Pope despite his ambiguity on doctrinal matters because (paraphrased) “Actions speak louder than words, and there have been too many words and not enough action for the past 30 years”:

[Pope Francis sometimes mistakenly] Contradicting Church doctrine is important though; he needs to be careful not to misrepresent Church teaching. That said, he seems to be putting more of an emphasis on dialogue, understanding, and compassion than doctrine and philosophy. Given that the Church hasn’t been doing too hot recently, perhaps a change is needed – coming from somebody who very much loved Pope Benedict the XVI.

As you can see, I really trashed the poor guy! He’ll be feeling that black eye in the morning!

I apparently struck a nerve, and got this in response:

Glad you’re offering to be the doctrine police. Guess the usual Vatican office is just too busy?

My initial reaction was annoyance that a simple discussion between two people who agree on most things couldn’t be kept civil. In the end, I actually wrote this in response:

I don’t even know what this is supposed to mean, but I guess I struck a nerve? I stand by what I said, and your response is utterly bizarre.

…And anyway, the Vatican has been, to put it bluntly, pretty shit at enforcing doctrine since Vatican II. But actually policing doctrine is above my pay grade; I’m just offering my opinion on the Pope.

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6 Responses to Paging the Codgitator

  1. Now ya dunnit. You are tainted forever. 😉

  2. I don’t know how the Holy Father will recover from my devastating insults.

  3. And for the record – Hopefully this helps clarify why it seems like I’m so 100% defensive of Pope Francis. I’m not afraid to point out what I see as problems, I’m just reacting to what I perceive as an extreme overreaction by the Catholic right. That comment is a more accurate portrayal of my attitude – I support what he’s trying to do, I think he’s doing a lot of good, but I hope he’s more clear about doctrine in the future and makes less ambiguous statements.

  4. BenYachov says:

    I saw you comment on the other blog I thought I would drop in.

    >Pope Francis sometimes mistakenly] Contradicting Church doctrine is important though; he needs to be careful not to misrepresent Church teaching. That said, he seems to be putting more of an emphasis on dialogue, understanding, and compassion than doctrine and philosophy. Given that the Church hasn’t been doing too hot recently, perhaps a change is needed – coming from somebody who very much loved Pope Benedict the XVI.

    I would have no problem with this. At best maybe you should have say “seemingly contradicting” but other then that minor quibble there is no disrespect, rebuke, misrepresentation, slander or detraction present.

    Scripture says rebuke not an Presbyter but exhort him as a father. This conforms to that completely.

    OTOH Morons who throw monkey poop at the Pope seeking the to revive the cult of fear and hatred, doom and gloom that festered when Pope John Paul II was alive are violating this command to the N’th degree.

    They are also worst than useless since they are distracting from the real problems and their real solution.

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