By now you folks have heard about what the Pope said, a piece of which I excerpt here:
I remember... that I was asked to give interviews and I always knew the questions in advance. They concerned the ordination of women, contraception, abortion and other such constantly recurring problems.
If we let ourselves be drawn into these discussions, the Church is then identified with certain commandments or prohibitions; we give the impression that we are moralists with a few somewhat antiquated convictions, and not even a hint of the true greatness of the faith appears. I therefore consider it essential always to highlight the greatness of our faith - a commitment from which we must not allow such situations to divert us.
Of course, that was said back in 2006, by Pope Benedict XVI.
“We cannot insist only on issues related to abortion, gay marriage and the use of contraceptive methods. This is not possible. I have not spoken much about these things, and I was reprimanded for that. But when we speak about these issues, we have to talk about them in a context. The teaching of the church, for that matter, is clear and I am a son of the church, but it is not necessary to talk about these issues all the time.
“The dogmatic and moral teachings of the church are not all equivalent. The church’s pastoral ministry cannot be obsessed with the transmission of a disjointed multitude of doctrines to be imposed insistently. Proclamation in a missionary style focuses on the essentials, on the necessary things: this is also what fascinates and attracts more, what makes the heart burn, as it did for the disciples at Emmaus. We have to find a new balance; otherwise even the moral edifice of the church is likely to fall like a house of cards, losing the freshness and fragrance of the Gospel. The proposal of the Gospel must be more simple, profound, radiant. It is from this proposition that the moral consequences then flow.
Clearly not much difference being expressed there by the two Popes. At all.
Pope Benedict's words were largely ignored when spoke back in 2006 but look how Pope Francis' words are being spun by the press:
Gays, Abortion Too Much Of Catholic Church's Obsession - Huffington Post
Disallow bans on gay marriage, abortion - Business Standard
The best media piece however comes from Australia where this was written:
The church, he [Pope Francis] said, should see itself as "a field hospital after a battle" and try to heal the larger wounds of society and not be "obsessed with the transmission of a disjointed multitude of doctrines to be imposed insistently".
Francis's approach contrasts starkly with that of his conservative predecessor, who stepped down in February and now lives a withdrawn life in the Vatican grounds.
Contrast sharply? Really?
All of this underscores why I said in this piece posted this morning:
Every one is talking about what the Pope said in an interview with America Magazine but I suspect no one is actually reading theinterview itself, instead relying on what the media is saying the Pope is saying, a reliance rife with problems.
Read it for yourselves here and end that dependence.
You might just learn something about the Pope and about how his words are typically twisted.
Let this be a lesson.