The View From 1776

Is the New Pope Too Doctrinaire?

Commentators, religious and otherwise, lament the Church’s missed opportunity to bring Christianity up-to-date.

Westerners, Americans in particular, have been conditioned by many generations of education to believe that anything old is by definition worthless.  We have no standards other than “tolerance,” which, as that word is commonly misused, means having no standards at all. 

Americans, and especially liberal-socialists, take great pride in being non-judgmental, in not condemning any sort of conduct, no matter how vile.  This doctrine of the religion of secular socialism is so much easier to follow than the Judeo-Christian mandate to look into one own heart and try to discover the right thing to do.  It’s so much easier to say in effect, “I gave at the office,” by raising a glass to the liberal-socialist concept of social justice and intoning, “Them’s my sentiments, too.” 

Being a good follower of the bottom-fishing hedonism of the New York Times’s editorial board requires no personal effort at all.  Just loll back, sip another glass of whatever wine is now fashionable, and be swept along by the the “evolving” standards of social conduct and by the “evolving” Constitution as interpreted by socialist judges.

It’s in that atmosphere that the Catholic Church has the unmitigated gall to select as its new Pope a man dedicated to maintaining the historical truths of Church doctrine, based on Biblical Scripture.  The widespread reaction, even from American Catholics, is why can’t we have a new Pope who is “with it,” a Pope who understands that people don’t want to hear about self-restraint, personal sacrifice; people don’t want to hear that God requires them to put the well-being of others ahead of their own.

It should, however, be obvious on second thought that religion ceases to be religion when it is no more than Hollywood’s latest fads interpreted by Frank Rich.  A Pope of the sort longed for by too many Americans would be no more than a second-string social commentator in the liberal-socialist press.

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