Okay. This isn't going to be pretty. As a matter of fact I may have to schedule an appointment for the Sacrament of Reconciliation by the time I post this. Now, I've come to expect the MSM and secular society to try and decimate the Pope and the Catholic Church every chance they have. They will try to sow the seeds of controversy where there is none and where there is a legitimate beef such as the recent clerical sex scandals, they will continue resurrecting the same stories over and over again trying to convince their readership that nothing has changed with the Church. Fine. The destruction of the Catholic Church is their agenda. We know this, we see it, we've experienced it and we should expect it from them. We also know that dissidents within the Church also have their own agenda and that is to re-create the Catholic Church into their own image. It is not hidden or done in secret. It is blatant and there for all to see. Again, we should expect it from these people. They've never disappointed us on that score.
Since the elevation of Pope Francis we've seen praise and criticism from the above detractors. They are still not sure what to expect from this pope and many are treading lightly with the criticisms and praising him for his simplicity as they see it. Don't worry, the praise won't be there for long and their onslaught of hate filled criticism for the Pope and the Catholic Church will be coming. They will not disappoint for they are consistent in this manner if nothing else.
However, what has me peeved with a heavy dose of anger thrown in for good measure is the way Pope Francis has been attacked, criticized, though in veiled attempts at times, by those purporting to be faithful Catholics. I read all the time how Catholics should be faithful and loyal to the Pope and the Magisterium if they consider themselves true Catholics. So what happened fellow Catholics? Wasn't the Holy Spirit's influence in the last conclave good enough for you ? Are you still ticked off that Benedict stepped down and that Pope Francis is now playing second fiddle as far as you're concerned? Is there ANYTHING Francis will do that will seem good and right to you?
News flash people: Benedict was not Francis and Francis is not Benedict. We have all been created as unique individuals with our own God given gifts, gifts to be shared amongst each other, and other gifts given that only God knows we possess. To expect each and everyone of us to be exactly the same is not only unfair but unjust. Pope Francis is not a clone of Benedict so get over it. I too love Benedict and was saddened to see him step down, but now another had to take his place and he has; Pope Francis. Are you now going to tell me that the Holy Spirit dropped the ball on this one? Really?? Are your criticisms however veiled, against Francis or against the Holy Spirit who chose or allowed this pope to be elected? Which is it? Did you ever think that possibly the Holy Spirit chose this pope for the good of the Church, or allowed his election, good or bad, because we deserve it and need to have our faith tested?
I've read the blogs and the comments that follow whenever the Pope seems to even THINK of doing something that some believe will set whatever reforms Benedict wanted to initiate back a million years. They are disgusting. They are vile. They are unworthy of any Catholic to utter and certainly not fair to this new Pope. This papacy is still in its embryonic stage and already we are trying to abort its mission? Come on!
Are we the new Israelites that grumbled against Moses everytime something was not to their liking? Some of the blogs and comments have become a soapbox for a bunch of baby waaaa waaaas, whining and complaining about Pope Francis' every move. It seems that even if he hasn't done anything to stir controversy some are already warning him before hand: "Don't even think it!!" Do some of you think the conclave elected and resurrected a new Borgia??
Black shoes, red shoes, traditional vestments, plain white vestments, women's feet, men's feet, feet, feet feet!...and the list goes on, and concerning Holy Thursday and the washing of women's feet: what part of our Lords model of serving one another did the Pope destroy that day? I read a comment by someone complaining there were not enough Catholics having their feet washed by the Pope. Really?? Did they ever think that perhaps it was because he meant it as a lesson to CATHOLICS? A lesson in humility and how to treat others that are different than we are? Someone washed our Lords feet one time with tears and poured expensive perfume on him and was roundly criticized....by Judas. Careful people. Oh yes....he disregarded the rules when he washed the women's feet...as Jesus and his disciples did when they plucked grains of wheat to eat on the Sabbath? "But the Sabbath was made for man not the other way around!" Yes that's true...so I ask again, what part of our Lords model of serving one another did the Pope destroy on Holy Thursday?
Look at what our current Pope has to deal with today: Forty years of abuse of the true spirit of Vatican II by malcontents. JPII and Benedict XVI fought this abuse also in their own way. Now it's Pope Francis' turn and already we've given him an 'F' on a test that he hasn't even taken yet. Yes, we've had forty years of wandering in the desert, but make no mistake, many of us are also responsible for what we are reaping today. Sure, many clerics contributed to it, but how many of us screamed bloody murder to our bishops and priest forty, thirty even twenty years ago that this be stopped? How many of us prayed daily for our priests and bishops? How many us had Masses said for them in the last forty years? More importantly, how many of us just went along for the ride until recently? So in the last ten years or so, we've finally seen the light and have said enough of this abuse. We washed our hands and cleaned our fingernails, scrubbed behind our ears and now we are pure and white as the wind driven snow. So pure and so righteous that we know better than the popes and we've earned our right to criticize them. Him. Francis. Seems to me that Peter had it easier when he was admonished by Paul, than Francis has today with bloggers and comments.
Agree or disagree with him, either way he is still our Pope. This time however, the shepherd's own loyal flock has turned against him. We've stepped out on thin ice this time people with our open criticisms of the Holy Father, Pope Francis. Our Church is ridiculed to no end by the world and we are going to provide more fodder for their ridicule by this bickering and back biting from supposedly faithful Catholics?
I have only one warning for us pewsitters. Be careful. Be very careful in our criticisms of the Pope and carefully examine our reasons for them for as Gamaliel said in Acts paraphrased; Take care you don't find yourselves fighting against the Holy Spirit as well as our Pope Francis.