Today and on previous Sundays we have heard gospel readings about Pharisees trying to put Jesus to the test and cause him to slip up.
It got me thinking whether what happened with the Pope recently could be seen in a similar light.
My thoughts as somebody who supports and listens to the Pope as the leader of the Catholic Church, but admittedly sometimes has concerns with some of things he says, is that perhaps in situations like this we ought to try to give him the benefit of the doubt.
In this case it was a film director, who as a gay man himself, was looking for a specific answer from the Pope on the issue of homosexual relationships. He wanted something he could use to push his agenda.
The Pope, in his response, wasn’t trying to make gay people feel marginalised, so he answered in the most gentle and kind way he could. He also specifically mentioned in that same interview where he talked about civil unions, that this didn’t encompass a sexual relationship of any kind, but of course, the director purposely took that part of the clip out.
Do I feel the Pope could have worded what he said better? Possibly. Do I think he is often put to the test by others to purposely slip up? Absolutely.
Jesus was able to answer perfectly every time, but the Pope is human, and sometimes he might slip up if enough people with ulterior motives try to trip him up.