No Pope should make a habit of offering his spontaneous reflections to the world.


Given the adversarial relation between the Church and the world—it is the height of naiveté to deny it—the Supreme Pontiff must be careful to weigh every word and phrase he chooses to utter in public, for the world will eagerly seize upon any ambiguity or telling omission in order to declare triumphantly that a new breach has appeared in the citadel and that the invasion of the Church by worldly thinking has made a stunning new advance. Thus a Pope’s pursuit of “simplicity” and “sincerity,” if it leads to the idea that the Pope must shun all formalism in his public addresses and “speak from the heart,” can come—inevitably will come—at the expense of all the faithful and at the risk of undermining the very credibility of the Church herself.

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Editor’s note: We’ve all heard the phrase, “The devil’s in the details.” It is also equally true that lack of detail might also serve evil purposes. When a pope makes vague, open-ended statements in public, he incites both scandal and dismay – while at the same time, reinvigorating the enemies of the church – who twist his imprecise language to their own nefarious ends.


  1. The “Francis formula” includes all ingredients necessary to spawn yet another media-driven papal personality cult: a la the one that arose around John Paul II, which survives and thrives to this day.

    Rather than embrace the ephemeral and usually false metrics of the “information” media, Catholics should reflexively distrust them. Moreover, they have a right to expect significantly greater discretion from their Pontiff.

  2. More heretical crap-trap I see!!
    Firstly. Lets spell it out shall we:
    The Pope is the POPE.
    The faithful are not permitted to engage in slanging matches with their lawful head on earth. The Faithful accept his will as the will of Jesus Christ on earth. The Faithful shall be obedient to the Pope!
    To shrug and imagine for a single moment in our puny existence that our critique of the Pope is either charitable, courageous or given in humility is an obscene self-deception!
    The pope is human and he may on occasion make errors BUT it is not permitted for individuals to hurl abuse against either his pontificate or his character! This action is sinful and causes scandal which is against the teaching of Mother Church,
    I am reminded when one of Padre Pio’s best friends started to rave against the Authorities in Rome because of the dreadful way the kindly Capuchin was treated he exploded in fury. Turning on them waving his finger in their face he demanded they stop at once, go at once to confession to ask God for mercy because he was nobody to accuse Mother Church of anything. It was a sin to presume he could do so!
    I remind all people here of that fact.
    Secondly, Pope Francis says many things and I note that they are not always well reported. My point is that scholarship requires us not to jump on the first wagon that passes simply because we have read that Pope Francis has done this or that and how dreadful we assume it may be!
    Apart from the sin in presumption as stated above it is against intellect to imagine the greatest theologian in the Church (There is hardly anyone more Catholic than the Pope!!) does not understand what he talks about!
    Thirdly and lastly and most sadly is the idea of FAITHFULNESS. In reading the article which is hardly beneficial to our Pope (Pope Francis is a wonderful humble man and I love him very much . .would that others would do so instead of shooting off spite and ignorance) it is clear that this quality has been trampled because the Pope seems to tolerate observations both pro or contrary. It is still the Roman Catholic position that he is the Pope. So the Pope is the Pope and the ravings of dispossessed intellects is something to be destroyed because of its sinful nature and idiotic critique against the Holy Father.

    I am sorry if readers do not appreciate my contradiction to the article but really there is very poor liberal excuse in allowing or accepting it as anything other than the heretical balderdash it is! So I make no apologies on this one!

    • Let’s not confuse the Holy Office with the man – who is obviously no theologian – and not even a very good extemporaneous speaker. We need to act in concert here – according to the mind of the church – for the salvation of souls. The speech and actions of the pope should be held to a much higher standard – not a lower one. This pope obviously likes to “hang out” and “rap” with people – and that’s fine – so long as he doesn’t cause scandal and disunity through repeated, ill-considered utterances – because – for a pope – THAT would be a very grave sin.

      Matthew 12:33-37 Either make the tree good and its fruit good: or make the tree evil, and its fruit evil. For by the fruit the tree is known. (34) O generation of vipers, how can you speak good things, whereas you are evil? for out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh. (35) A good man out of a good treasure bringeth forth good things: and an evil man out of an evil treasure bringeth forth evil things. (36) But I say unto you, that every idle word that men shall speak, they shall render an account for it in the day of judgment. (37) For by thy words thou shalt be justified, and by thy words thou shalt be condemned.


      • Nevertheless Doug the Pope is the Pope and whether we like him or not, indeed whatever we think of the person he is the legitimate pontiff! It is not for lesser souls to presume that he is incapable in his utterances because he chooses to be more pastoral than doctrinal.
        As for being a good preacher well St Paul to all accounts was a bit boring in his public addresses to the faithful and seem to have made people fall asleep . .and even drop out of windows in doing so!
        You may recall that John Paul 1 was heavily criticised because he had written a famous book full of letters directed to characters such as Pinocchio!
        The critics failed to appreciate the smile and wayward hat that won peoples hearts and gave him the accolade of Gods Candidate! Like Theresa Liseux what people criticise is often of highly dubious matter and rather than thinking we know best my address is that we should try to comprehend how we may evolve our lives around our duty in the faith to our Pope regardless of what we feel they are not addressing.
        The references to Scripture are fine but we must remember that scripture was written whilst we only had one pope and it was commonly felt that the Second coming was imminent. Point here is that I think Pope Francis is well aware of Scripture and I may well imagine that his understanding of Holy Writ is greater than both of ours!
        In that single act of faith it is that are condemned if we are not careful and sneer at the Pope, because we assume to our own opinions a value they are not worth.

      • You assume facts which – as yet – are not in evidence, regarding Pope Francis.


  3. But The Pope is the Pope! He is not some doodling dingbat! Pope Francis is Our Pope and I cannot understand, perceive or comprehend how any Catholic cannot be in full admiration of this holy man!
    To think that traditionalist Catholics should presume him in error/stupid/naieve is laughable if it were not bordering on out right heresy!

    • I do not withhold my obedience. Nor do I withhold my valid concerns, based on my informed conscience – according to my particular knowledge and experience – which is my right (and yours) as a Catholic, according to Canon Law 212.

      Even you must admit – anyone who prefers to drive around in a high-mileage 1984 Renault 4 instead of a “real” car – probably should have his head examined!


      • “…anyone who prefers to drive around in a high-mileage 1984 Renault 4 instead of a “real” car – probably should have his head examined!”

        No onboard computer. No black box. No GPS. Yeah, Doug, you’re crazy: crazy like the fox. Hang onto that car for as long as possible!

  4. Its not even Spring but I can hear the call loud and clear from the blog!
    CUCKOO . . CUCKOO . . . CUCKOO!!!

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