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New Pope, Same as The Old Ones?

Updated on March 17, 2013

A New Voice for Old Ideas

The newly-elected Pope brings a lot of firsts to the Vatican. Not surprising since we had the first Papal retirement in nearly six hundred years. We have our first Pope Francis, our first Pope from the Americas, and our first Jesuit.

I'll say I was surprised at the selection, his name did not come up among the front-runners. According to some, he was runner-up at the last conclave, and he may have been a case where rather than prolong a conclave the Cardinals compromised.

Francis does seems to want to bring a sense of simplicity to the Vatican, and one can hope that extends to the Church. As a Jesuit, his order is known for service to and for the poor.

But he also seems to be interested in toeing the line on issues like reproduction and homosexuality, and there are allegations of ties to his country's military junta.

I do wish Francis I well, he inherits a Church that is working through scandals of abuse, and at times seems out of step with a world becoming more and more secular each day. A church that is feeling pressure from both the left and right, and I fear is slipping further and further into fundamentalism.

I would like to see Francis lead the Church forward and bring the faith into a modern world. Will it happen, we can only see and pray.


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