The Pope’s interview in perspective

In an earlier blog I suggested that many see Catholicism as an “or else” religion whose teachings all begin within “thou shalt not” rather than a community of sinners proclaiming God’s love and forgiveness.

Yesterday I was delighted to read that Pope Francis has made the same point far more simply and eloquently. The Church is not a body of doctrines, a smorgasbord from which we may pick and choose what to preach, but the Word of God which must be proclaimed in its fullness.

Each of us must resist the temptation to choose a particular teaching of the Church as the touchstone of our orthodoxy while disregarding others as less important. In doing so we both distort and betray the Gospel and the image of the Church. We also lie to ourselves.

If we don’t agree with what the Holy Father teaches, we don’t need a new Pope, we need a new attitude.

I urge you to read the Pope’s entire interview to discover what an exceptional man God has given us.

Image Credit: CNS photo/Stefano Rellandini, Reuters

This post is also available in/Esta entrada también está disponible en: Spanish

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  1. Katherine McGovern says

    Dear Bishop Farrell,
    Pope Francis’ leadership toward the practical, everyday application of the meaning of the Beatitudes and love, rather than a narrower focus, is encouraging. The Church’s doctrine is not changed by the Pope’s leadership, but rather the Pope reminds us that our obligations as Catholics and Christians are not satisfied by narrowness of focus. God would certainly not have created this diverse world if He did not love us all.

    Thank you for your statements.


  2. Father Carl Diederichs says

    Dear Bishop Farrell,

    Thank you especially for the line about needing a new attitude. I am truly hopeful that Vatican II will now become a reality after being highjacked for many years.

    Fr. Carl

    • Cody Serra says

      Bishop Farrell:
      I have felt so refreshed by Francis’ interview! His words on preaching the Gospel of love, mercy and forgiveness could attract many of our brothers and sisters that left.
      I was surprised this past weekend for the silence about the Pope’s thoughts at Mass, bulletins, parishes web sites. I believe it is a document that could be used in the new evangelization. Maybe you could encourage your priests to read it and encourage its reading by all, as you just did. Thank you.