Is Pope Francis being unfairly put to the test?

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.


I think he answered the way he wanted. It is up to us to open our hearts & receive it with the love God intended it.

Every human being deserves to be treated with the dignity of a child of God.

Marriage is between a man & a woman. Pope Francis did not say anything to the contrary.


I can see some parallels there. People have been bashing everything he’s said since the day he was elected. This is from a friend’s Facebook page. Maybe it’ll clear up some things: “Francis’ exact words: “Las personas homosexuales tienen derecho a estar en la familia, son hijos de Dios, tienen derecho a una familia. No se puede echar de la familia a nadie, ni hacer la vida imposible por eso. Lo que tenemos hacer es una ley de Convivencia civil.”
Literal translation. “Homosexual persons have a right to be in a family. They are children of God, they have a right to a family. You can’t throw anyone out of the family, nor make life impossible for that. What we need to create is a law of civil coexistence.”
The word “Convivencia” is important here; it literally means “living together”, but is not used to refer to civil unions. That would be “Unión civil” which he did not say.”

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The problem is that his whole papacy seems to be defined by this vagueness. Objectively, the Pope has a long history of making vague, ambiguous statements that aren’t cleared up afterwards:

  1. His statements about communing divorced & remarried Catholics in “Amoris Laetitia”
  2. His statements in September that God loves gay children “as they are.
  3. The entire Amazon Synod (was it an idol? a bad Virgin Mary? Sacrilege? Who knows?)
  4. His civil unions comment (clearly vague as you can see from the mass confusion here)
  5. Etc. etc. etc.

1 Corinthians 14:33: “For God is not the author of confusion, but of peace, as in all churches of the saints.”


Shows there was piecing from previous interviews. Also puts a different slant on his words about civil union law.

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I understand. That is a fair concern to have.


It could also be that we the laity are being put to the test: To hold fast to the truths that St. Paul spoke of. (Not that I am trying to say that Pope Francis is guilty of anything; it could be indeed a ‘both:and’ type of thing where both Pope Francis’ words are being twisted so that he is being ‘tested’ AND that the laity by being given these twisted words are likewise being ‘tested.’

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I agree with everything you said.


Yes, he is. Ever since he became Pope the traditionalists have complained about nearly everything he did or said.

Too many “mini”popes” and armchair theologians

Laymen that don’t know their place. I listen and learn from the Pope. It’s not my station to criticize him.


I think it said the interview was in 2019 and H.H. Pope Francis was referring to the right of gay people to be accepted into their own families.

He is incredibly vague in multiple statements where clarity is needed. It is intentional to be vague or specific. That is not being unfairly put to the test.


That’s right - he was not referring to an entitlement of 2 gay persons to “form a family” as do man & woman form a family through marriage.

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You know what the worst part of it is that we’ll never get an apology from this Pope we never got apologies from past Popes.

Yet were quick to apologize to the nations that we baptized for supposedly colonizing them.

St John Paul II did some things too and I don’t understand why he never addressed those issues or apologized.

I still believe he’s a Saint but I don’t know how to reconcile him kissing a Koran, not becoming outraged about the Buddha statue on a Tabernacle or seeing the issue with Buddhist ceremonies besides a Catholic Mass simultaneously, and Native American rituals for the Canonization of Saint Juan Diego.

None of the Popes before Vatican II ever allowed this sort of thing.

Maybe at the Judgment we will get these apologies?


Tell that to St Paul and St Teresa of Avila…

St Teresa was a religious she wasn’t even a Bishop like St Paul.

Unfair criticism and absolute hatred of Pope Francis this is wrong but no I do think there is a lot of stuff that has happened that even the least intelligent and theologically sophisticated layman can look at and say “that ain’t right!”

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It might be better to say: “How can that be right”? It may well not be right.

Yes and it is unbelievable that Catholics buy into the media and put their trust in the media rather then in the magisterium.

Way to rip the Church apart.

God loves everyone, all His Creations. That is Catholic teaching.

We do know, it was said from the start that it was not the Virgin Mary and obviously it was not a pagan idol or the magisterium would never have allowed it inside a Church

NO, not his comments, the edited mashed up version of a movie producer who should be made accountable for publishing the entire unedited version.

Critical thinking is the key here, rather then running off and believing everything the media prints, what happened to the catch cry of fake news. Does it only stand for certain political parties?

You don’t need the media’s statements; you can read the Pope’s own. And the Pope’s statements in Amoris Laetitia were so puzzling that four cardinals (not the media) issued their dubia, which is Latin for “doubts”.

Father Mitch Pacwa disagrees: “Knock it off. We are not stupid. We are not. This is an idol.”

He then said: “Stop - You’re talking about making an offering to a goddess that the people of the Andes put higher than Jesus and his Blessed Mother.”

The Italian Bishops’ Conference also published a Prayer to Pachamama (!) before the Synod started in their official publication:

(“A Prayer:
Pachamama of these places,
drink and eat this offering at will,
so that this land may be fruitful.
Pachamama, good mother
Be propitious! Be propitious!
Let the oxen walk well,
and let them not be tired.

Then people should not be prostrating themselves before it.
(You can clearly see the figures in the middle of the circle where people are prostrating at 12:25)

It’s not the mash-up I’m talking about. His exact words (I speak Spanish) were “convivencia civil” - which can refer to same-sex civil unions, can refer to two people in a legal agreement, or can refer to “civil coexistence” of everyone in a society. Once again the Pope was clear as mud.


It definitely wasn’t the last. You wouldn’t need ‘una ley de convivencia civil’ for that.

And just to point out that he didn’t say ‘we need’ that law. He said it’s a law ‘that we have to make/create’.

Have you read the entire document, or just gone by what the media and four cardinals are saying?

The Pope disagrees with his priest. I listen to my Pope, not one of his presbyters. The Italian Bishops Conference have an entire statement about what they were about, did you read that because Catholics should, and read it in the context it is meant.

There was a very clear statement it was not the Virgin Mary from the get go. Pope Francis also explained what the Synod was about and consecrated the Synod to St Francis of Assisi. Hardly a pagan act.

You and I and no one else has the original unedited unmashed up interview or documentary yet. So what we are both talking about is a mash up. The Pope was edited and mashed up. If you have the original unedited with an unedited and correct translation, post it. Otherwise we all wait for the movie producer to release it.

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