Benedict Stands Firm
This news is shared with no anti-Catholic bias as I feel none. As a married priest, who under the right conditions remarries people after divorce and under most any condition lets them receive communion, who enjoys the liturgy in English and a variety of music in worship, etc. it is self evident that my practices vary from those of the Pope. I love Gregorian Chant and am proud of my daughter for taking Latin in high school, but I don't want them back as regular features of worship at King of Peace.
But it is Benedict's role to lead the 1.1 Billion Catholics, not mine. And he is leading as those Cardinals who said their prayers and cast their votes expected he would.
This does offer an occasion to comment that it is very common that two different people will read the Bible, pray fervently for guidance and will feel God leading them two different ways. I sometimes wish this were not so, but there it is. Some will find in this excuse to consider that God is leading one person and not the other, or perhaps neither person.
Instead, I see that in my reading of scripture and saying my prayers, I am confident that I can be married, for example, as I am confident of some other views at variance with Benedict's exhortation. But I am also confident that Benedict is saying his prayers and leading the church with which he has been entrusted as faithfully as he knows how. I do well to listen to how God is leading me while not judging Benedict for how he hears God leading him.
I don't have to conclude is that Benedict is wrong or the place I stand is better. Instead, I am drawn to the conclusion that God knows that many of us are in different places and that the Holy Spirit is capable and even apt to work with each of us where we are and not where others wish we would be. This is messy. If I were God I would handle things differently. This is yet another of a long list of reasons why I am not God.
But I am confident that God is working out the redemption of the world. I also trust that Julian of Norwich was right in affirming that all shall be well, and all shall be well, and all manner of thing shall be well...even when people who share a strong faith in Jesus differ in where they see their Lord leading them.
What do you think?
The Rev. Frank Logue, Pastor
Labels: Pope Benedict XVI