A lot of people–especially conservatives and traditionalists–are freaking out about Pope Francis comments, especially his most recent interview for America magazine. Don’t get me wrong. I’m not unsympathetic. Even though Pope Francis is not overturning any doctrines or giving out “Get Into Heaven Free” passes to the lowest bidders, he does have a VERY different style that requires some getting used to after the more charismatically catechetical (chasmachetical?) approach of Pope John Paul II and Pope Benedict XVI. I’ll admit that I, myself have found it as jarring as it is liberating. That said, I think people’s fears are misplaced. Marcel Lejeune at Aggie Catholic agrees and I encourage anyone who is tempted to begin dressing in sackcloth and ashes either because of what Pope Francis says, or what the press says he says, to read Marcel’s essay titled, “7 Reasons Pope Francis Worries Some Catholics and Why They Shouldn’t Worry.” It’s excellent.
And of course, readers should always be sure to read the Pope’s interview for themselves. He is nothing if not accessible!
Dr. Popcak’s prescription for Franco-Phobes? Take one deep, cleansing breath and call Jesus in the morning (and at noon, and at night).