Healing us on the Sabbath
I think we can see what Pope Francis is getting at. I hope I can. He is trying to show the healing ‘balm’ of Mercy to people who may feel excluded from Mother Church eg. by allowing some remarried people to receive Holy Communion. He also welcomes gay people, who suffer a lot, into the family of the Church too and is not anti-Islam but open to genuine dialogue with Muslims and all Faiths.
For some reason, this much radical Mercy drives some very religious people really crazy eg Cardinal Raymond Burke. It reminds me of the accusations against Jesus because he healed people on the Sabbath. The hatred of Christ.
“Stand out in the middle” Jesus told the crippled man to demonstrate God’s love. How frustrated Jesus felt. How desperately misunderstood.
We need to stand out in the middle with Pope Francis, who is being attacked fiercely, too and so be healed of our ‘holy’ prejudices and legalistic hardness of heart. Stick with Peter, the Rock. Don’t be confused by any hyper-religious arguments no matter how ‘pure’ they seem to be.
My old friend John Collins, God rest him now, used to always happily say:
“Stick with the winners”
The Pope is not changing the foundational teaching of the Church. He simply can’t. Real marriage IS indissoluble. “Let no man put asunder what God joins”
He is polishing up our deep, central Catholic Truth up with great care like you carefully polish brass. Jesus is Mercy. He rejects no one. He can’t.
God IS forgiving Love.