Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam

Essential thinking for reading Catholics.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

An interesting way to put it.

As longtime readers, you guys will know I do not always agree with Fr. Thomas J. Reese, SJ. Mark Mossa, for whom I have violent respect, considers him (Fr. Reese) a friend and as I respect Mark, and Mark respects Fr. Reese, it makes sense for me to give serious consideration to the things Fr. Reese expounds, even if I come to a different conclusion...or even a bewilderingly different conclusion.

Therefore, in doing so, I ran across a piece by Fr. Reese wherein he makes the following observation about the Holy Father: "For Benedict, the world is his classroom." Now, while there are some things which Father writes that give me pause and where I believe his analogy stretches well beyond its natural elasticity, I believe this thought is the money quote.

Once you look at it that way, much of the Holy Father's modus operandi becomes pellucidly clear. JP2 has been said to have considered the papacy in the light of a parish priest...only that his parish encompassed the globe. If you look at JP2 under that light, a lot of his pontificate comes into suddenly sharp focus. "It makes more sense now." The same holds for B16.

To put the two men in context, and a slightly different context than you are likely to see, it can be argued that JP2, with all his world-hopping, showed the world (and his Catholic flock in particular) that there was so much more to their faith than they had thought...and, once this flock realizes there is that much more to learn, they thirst for someone who will teach* them. Voila'...B16, compliments of the Holy Spirit.



* Acts 8:30-31...look it up, it will do you good.


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