|photo by Jeffrey Bruno Aleteia / flickr|
So even though I did not go to the Parson's church--and even then he was considered a maverick--his message of hate seeped into our community. Not only were we told we couldn't date Catholics but marriage was out of the question. Why the Priest would say all your children would have to be baptized--we called it sprinkled--and they would be brainwashed by the Catholic Church and be forever lost. And we knew where that would lead.
Along the way I met some Catholics. Why the Editor of our High School paper was Catholic. Shirley didn't have horns, she didn't seem so different from us--in fact she was a smart girl and a delight to be around. Maybe she was responsible for making me begin to wonder about my Catholic prejudice. But she was the first of many along the way.
The Pope has already shaken up his church and many of his managers are shaking their heads. He seems to be unmanageable. Name almost any issue that affects people: Global warming, birth control, divorce, gay folk and his great heart aching for all those refugees. He is going to prick the conscience of those of us sitting comfortably in our dens listening to his moral challenges. Why he has said that if every parish would take in one refugee family we could begin to deal with this crisis. He is giving hope to Catholics that have been disenfranchised from their church for ages. This Pope is also giving hope to people around the world. He is saying the church of Jesus Christ is supposed to follow its Lord and his strong commands. Strange gospel, indeed.
I'd be surprised if he did not say something about Muslims. ISIS is scary indeed. Sharia law would
|photo by See Tefl / flickr|
Is it really in the spirit of America--not to speak of the church--to make these folk who work in our towns, walk down our streets and buy groceries with us--feel safe, Why they have done no more to deserve our ire than the neighbors next door. The Christian faith is supposed to say welcome--not just as an evangelistic tool--but common decency.
There are a whole lot of outsiders around us. Some are Hispanic, some are poor, some never had the chance that we have had. Sometimes the Christian faith is a hard business. "I was a stranger and you took me in..." cannot be revised or amended. It is part of a Constitution a whole lot older than the US document. And God bless Pope Francis and the United States of America. God bless the whole wide world.
--Roger Lovette / rogerlovette.blogsplot.com