My true colors come out at the election of a Pope.
I have remained Catholic all of these years precisely because Christ is truly present in the Blessed Sacrament, and that he has given us his Vicar on earth, the Pope, and of course, the Blessed Virgin as Mother of the Church. Everything flows from that, in a sense. To have the Eucharist we must have a Pope and the bishops who ordain the priests who minister the sacraments. The Pope shepherds, guides, teaches, protects the sheep. The Mother is the Blessed Shepherdess of the sheep. But I'm mixing up an otherwise very simple profession of faith and reason why I am Catholic, which is a preface for the following.
When it comes to solid Catholic commentary on the conclave, I'm going with Fr. Z - if he manages to stay online, and those like him - if there are any. This morning I especially liked his commentary on Cardinal Sodano's homily.
[This next part seems to me to be what the Dean, Card Sodano, is suggesting as a major point for the Cardinal Electors as they go into the Conclave. Remember, Sodano is over 80 and cannot vote even though he is the Dean of the College.] In the wake of this service of love toward the Church and towards all of humanity, the last popes have been builders of so many good initiatives for people and for the international community, tirelessly promoting justice and peace. Let us pray that the future Pope may continue this unceasing work on the world level. [Look. Yes, Pope's do these things. But is that their principle role? Is that the principle role of the Church in the world? To promote initiatives of justice and peace in the international community? I noted with interest that the Dean quoted Paul VI's Populorum progressio, which was not a little controversial in its day. At the time, there were concerns that to smacked of Marxism. It also spoke to the North/South divide. Perhaps I am reading this wrong, but I have the sense that this is a call for Paul VII. It is without question that Benedict XVI wrote eloquently of initiatives of justice and peace in Deus caritas est, etc. But to stress this, during the Year of Faith, when Benedict XVI tried to launch the Church on a project of NEW EVANGELIZATION, that is, the recovery of Catholic identity in those places where it has been dying and a new direction even in places where the Church is emerging, the Dean flips back the calendar to the 1970's. This is my first reaction. I may add and revise later. To be fair, the Dean quoted Benedict XVI in a way that opens what Paul VI said in a more expansive way than I have suggested. Here is what he said earlier in the sermon when he quoted Paul: "This is what Benedict XVI wrote in his Lenten Message for this year (n.3). "Sometimes we tend, in fact, to reduce the term "charity" to solidarity or simply humanitarian aid. It is important, however, to remember that the greatest work of charity is evangelization, which is the "ministry of the word". There is no action more beneficial – and therefore more charitable – towards one’s neighbour than to break the bread of the word of God, to share with him the Good News of the Gospel, to introduce him to a relationship with God: evangelization is the highest and the most integral promotion of the human person. As the Servant of God Pope Paul VI wrote in the Encyclical Populorum Progressio, the proclamation of Christ is the first and principal contributor to development (cf. n. 16)." BUT... let's continue to be fair. This sounds like Sodano contra Sodano. Quoting Populorum progressio is a signal.]
We won’t get another Ratzinger in that sphere, for there isn’t one. But we can pray for a Pope who will embrace that vision and continue it. No initiative we undertake as a Church can succeed unless we revitalize our liturgical worship, exactly along the lines that Benedict XVI pointed to. - Fr. Z
I also want to say, if Cardinal Burke were to be elected Pope, I wouldn't be disappointed, because my greatest concern is that the Roman Catholic Church should remain, as Fr Z stated, "exactly along the lines that Benedict XVI pointed to."
I have always loved the martyrs of Gorcum who were martyred simply because they would not abandon belief in the Blessed Sacrament and in Papal supremacy. At the end of my life, I hope I can proclaim with the Gorcum Martyr, Andreas Wouters of Heynoord, who stated, “Fornicator I always was, but heretic I never was.” - Source