|(Christ Handing the Keys to St. Peter)|
Although Pope Francis recently made a somewhat conciliatory statement regarding gays who search for the Lord and have good
will, he did not do the same for women who want to be Roman Catholic priests.
Regarding these latter requests about women, the Pope firmly stated: The Church has spoken and says no… that door is closed. It would be hard to convince any impartial individual that
this response is not a judgmental one.
And yet… during these same "free ranging talks during his [recent] flight home from Brazil," Pope Francis also said: …who am I to judge? Although this question came on the heels of a statement particularly pertaining to the abovementioned gays, it does raise other questions about who the Pope really is.
Wikipedia tells us that the very word "Pope" comes from the Latin word papa, meaning "father." His "fatherly" roles include being Bishop of Rome, head of the Roman Catholic Church, and successor of Saint Peter the Apostle.
Although popular culture often believes that "father knows best," this has not always pertained to popes. In fact, the doctrine of "papal infallibility" is comparatively quite young, having officially begun in 1870 AD.
Therefore, when the Pope says that "the Church has spoken," and that its door for female Roman Catholic priests remains closed, by what/whose authority is he issuing that pronouncement?
If that authority is not truly an infallible one, then perhaps it's well past the time for it to be conscientiously challenged.
Copyright July 30, 2013 by Linda Van Slyke All Rights Reserved