Mr. Cruz and Pope Francis.
The story and commentary is growing and getting dissected.
Not to worry. Prayer obtains all. I should have known better than to respond to the story so quickly, but it is a really good reminder of how deeply I need 'to allow myself to be taught', to paraphrase St. John of the Cross.
Having more background on the story helped me out - Juan Carlos Cruz was reportedly discredited by the Chilean bishops, whose spokesmen pointed out that he was gay and therefore unreliable, a blame and shame the victim strategy. So it fits that the Holy Father would make such a comment privately and personally, without feeling the need to hold up the catechism and point out what actual teaching is. I'm sure Mr. Cruz knew it already. It was a private exchange and was a kindly affirmation of an individual person, and as I've said before, it was not 'for me' nor did it change Catholic teaching. I'm not sure the Pope expected it to be made public, nor did he intend it as a correction of doctrinal teaching, and I highly doubt he will clarify it.
My initial reaction had more to do with how media and social media especially erupted, and it reveals how deeply my own 'doctrinal adhesion' if you will, became a barrier to a basic sense of empathy. On one level, it reveals my own self-righteousness based upon my personal sense of 'dogmatic fidelity'. (It kind of adds credence to what Pope Francis warns us all about regarding strains of 'Neo-Pelagianism and Neo-Gnosticism' infecting Catholics.)
That said, it's amazing how many outside the Church, especially former practicing Catholic celebrities, seemed to have understood the gesture immediately. I know conservative writers seem to think 'liberals' consider the Pope's gesture to be a sea change in Catholic doctrinal teaching, but I don't see it that way at all. Of course Fr. Martin, S.J. might see it that way, yet so do traditionalists, who are already predicting the Youth Synod will be corrupted by the 'liberal' POV. This sort of projection of what could happen or not happen is typical of those who have come through the culture wars, and it is outside my expertise and competence. It's also very often completely devoid of charity.
Again, I love the Holy Father and I am grateful for his humble leadership.