Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Pope Francis and the Church

Pope Francis is the one to reform the Catholic Church making it a more practical and relevant church for the 21st century.

Starting with the acceptance of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT),  people in this life time will even see granting of the sacrament of matrimony for same-sex couples, recognizing and accepting their right to live a joined life, in several years time.  This acceptance of LGBT is silently and currently having a positive effect, and will continue to be more effectually pervasive in the next years to come, upon most of the errant sex offender - priests, especially the pedophiles.

This forgiving and accepting attitude, which the Catholic Church is now adopting, means that all the sex offender- clergymen can come with out the fear of too much rebuke from their fellows.  It will even greatly reduce the number of these erring clergy, as the fear and guilt of rejection by society that fuels the basic conflicts seething deep inside a typical LGBT, is put to ease with this more mature attitude that the catholic church is adopting.

But there is a big difference between acceptance and condoning; the Catholic Church will still not condone sex offenders within its ranks.  The sex offender - clergymen will just be quietly defrocked and rehabilitated, without too much censure.

We may even see the advent of women priests and priests being allowed to marry, but these changes will be several, several years down the line.  In this case the Catholic Church will seem to take a page from its anglican and fundamentalist christian counterparts, as the church reforms to somewhat resembling what it was in its early history during the time of the church fathers before the Nicean convention.

The church sacraments will be easier to obtain, and less costly too.

Church annulments maybe easier to obtain.  More importantly the Catholic Church will reform into a religion that readily addresses humanity's problems at hand, directly working with these problems, rather than just making comments about them.  We will see a more civic-oriented church, participating more with the rest of the world community in the handling of the upcoming global disasters.  As a result, the Vatican will be seen to become a participating relevent state, rather than just the official seat of a thousands year old religion.

All of this will come to pass as the Catholic Church shifts its focus from a religion centered on sin and unworthiness, to a religion that acknowledges the basic goodness in all people, regardless of gender, sexual preference, race and beliefs, and working from there in shepherding its flock.

The Catholic Church will even be seen to be more in dialogue with other great faiths of humanity, exercising more acceptance of other belief systems, and even the "faithless ones" (e.g., agnostics and atheists).  The churches in Europe will experience a resurgence of young people regularly attending church services.

Regarding his visit to the Philippines this coming January 2015, it will significantly improve and hasten the rehabilitation drive for areas and people affected by Yolanda.  However, it would be ironic that the Pope will only be shown the affected areas preferred by the government.  Even if this happens, nonetheless, the local church, namely the CBCP would be galvanized more to involve themselves comprehensively to the rehabilitation efforts.  I see that the unaccounted relief goods and funds would suddenly reappear, and finally be used for what they were intended for.

Reading Date: November 21, 2014; November 25, 2014
Photos: Various sources