29 June 2013

Pope Benedict Was Interested in the Poor Also

There has been an effort by some, including well meaning Catholics, to contrast Pope Francis's concern for the poor as something not shared by his predecessor.  While they may have different styles it is an unfair comparison. When one thinks of the saint who had the greatest love of the poor most will immediately think of St. Francis. Yet his contemporary St. Dominic had an equal regard for the poor and poverty but hardly anyone would think of him in the same way they do St. Francis. Below is an excerpt of an article overlooked during the pontificate of Pope Benedict but very enlightening.


by Andrea Gagliarducci

"In the concrete history of the Church, however, a contrary tendency is also manifested, namely that the Church becomes self-satisfied, settles down in this world, becomes self-sufficient and adapts herself to the standards of the world."

Moreover: "Not infrequently, she gives greater weight to organization and institutionalization than to her vocation to openness towards God, her vocation to opening up the world towards the other."

And finally: "Once liberated from material and political burdens and privileges, the Church can reach out more effectively and in a truly Christian way to the whole world, she can be truly open to the world."

Who said this? 

A first – instinctive – answer to this question would be: Pope Francis. He made "a Church of poverty and for the poor" his mark from his very first meeting with journalists. He, who has increasingly often repeated that "institutions are useful, but up to a point". He even exhorted the future Papal nuncios to “keep their inner freedom.” 

The statements at the beginning of this article are actually not Francis’. They are Benedict XVI’s. The now Pope emeritus made those remarks in Freiburg, on September 25, 2011, to Catholics engaged in the life of the Church and society. 

Read the rest here.

No comments:


This blog and the opinions are all my own and in no way imply the endorsement from any organization. Nor does a recommendation of another blog or web site imply my agreement or endorsement of everything found on their site.