Impoverished Spirits (Pope Francis is no “Brother Sun, Sister Moon” romantic)

First Things ^ | 4/10/13 | George Weigel

Posted on Wednesday, April 10, 2013 3:13:19 AM by markomalley

Certain ritual encounters have now become standard operating procedure for a new pope. In each of these meetings, Pope Francis has done something surprising, in his low-key, gentle way.

In a Mass celebrated in the Sistine Chapel with the College of Cardinals on the day after his election, the Holy Father raised cautions about clerical ambition—a yellow warning flag that reflected the concerns he had expressed during the papal interregnum about “spiritual worldliness” corrupting the Church, and an unmistakable call to a more energetically evangelical exercise of the priesthood and the episcopate.

Read more @ firstthings.com/onthesquare/2013/04/impoverished-spirits

Thanks!

Thank you LVCabbie for posting the link. I absolutely love to read George Weigel’s columns.

Don’tcha wish all priests and deacons would talk about this during their homilies?

Here are the last three paragraphs:

The last phrase—“the nature that unites every human being on this earth”—was the money quote here. For that is precisely what so much of the spiritually impoverished world of radical secularism and lifestyle libertinism now denies: that there is any “human nature” which public policy and law must respect. That’s what those who continue to support “abortion rights” deny. That’s what those who insist that “marriage” can mean any configuration of consenting adults deny. That’s what those who regard children as an optional lifestyle accessory deny. And that’s what those who insist that maleness and femaleness are “cultural constructs,” not givens that disclose deep truths about the human condition, deny.

Those denials, Pope Francis suggested, lead to a spiritual impoverishment that can be as devastating as material poverty. And those denials can lead to conflicts within societies that shatter peace just as much as conflicts between societies.

Pope Francis is no “Brother Sun, Sister Moon” romantic. As an experienced pastor and a man of keen intelligence, he knows that reality-contact is as important for societies as it is for personal mental health. He’ll make the case in a different way than Benedict XVI. But you can count on this pontificate to challenge the dictatorship of relativism in the name of authentic humanism.

The bolded paragraph is what we must all discuss and pray on. Moral depravity will always keep us from achieving true peace.

Seems to me it is way too early to start assessing Pope Francis’ pontificate.

If you ignore his daily activities which only show more and more of the man who shuns all the regal trapping of past popes. :slight_smile:

I agree with you. Give him time to set his own course.

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Excerpt from post #1 link to Weigel’s story:

Pope Francis is no “Brother Sun, Sister Moon” romantic. As an experienced pastor and a man of keen intelligence, he knows that reality-contact is as important for societies as it is for personal mental health. He’ll make the case in a different way than Benedict XVI.

But you can count on this pontificate to challenge the dictatorship of relativism in the name of authentic humanism.

I’m still not sure what Weigel means by bringing in “Brother Sun, Sister Moon” (a beautifully crafted movie by Zefirelli about St. Francis from the early 1970’s). But the last sentence in that paragraph (I made it a separate paragraph to pop it out, and bolded and italicized a key phrase) seems to point less toward Pope Francis replacing Pope Benedict – as taking the baton from him in the relay race.

Re: “Brother Sun, Sister Moon” I enthusiastically asked a Franciscan how he liked it at the time it came out. He remarked on its good points but complained that the Francis of the film was a lot more “soft” than he saw him (as a courageous, bold man with zeal as well as just sweetness).

I didn’t ask him, but the 1961 film “Francis of Assisi” with Bradford Dillman playing Francis and (soon to be SISTER) Dolores Hart playing St. Clare – may have been more to his liking as Francis himself is stronger (in that version his solo ministry of evangelizing the Moslem army is recounted).

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Pope Francis seems to be quite down to earth and with a spirit of service that trumps the virtue of organizational leadership. That’s always a good order of priorities. Like Jesus had. And HE did both well too.

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