Saturday, February 23, 2013

The Papacy for non-Catholics

God picks the pope.  It's not politics. 

No matter who the new Pope is he won't change Catholic doctrine. That means abortion, sex outside of marriage--including homosexual sex--, artificial birth control, and women priests will all stay on the outside of what God has defined as right.

Similarly the new Pope won't reduce the Church's commitment to the poor and disadvantaged.  The Church will stand for the rights of women and children.  The Church will continue to be the largest charitable institution on the planet.

That's the nice thing about the Church while the trappings may change--Latin for the Mass then, now the vernacular-- the Truth the Church teaches hasn't changed for 2000 years.

While the Post Office may deliver rain or shine the Church delivers right through the collapse of one civilization and the rise of the next.  The peoples and nations that first embraced the Church have mostly vanished, known only to people interested in ancient history, but you can pick up a book written in 80AD, called the Didache, and see the same truths the Church teaches now.

One of the key reasons the Church has stayed the course is the Papacy.  Not the Popes. We've had a bunch of loser Popes.  Like the rest of Catholics Popes are all too clearly not incapable of sin.  But despite the failings of the Pope the Church sails on. That's because Jesus established the Church to be His agent on Earth. But He also ensured us that the Holy Spirit would protect the Church.

By having one source of Truth that is guaranteed to never be wrong the Church can always be secure in its teachings.  The Bible is great but it can be interpreted in many ways, as the huge number of Protestant denominations prove, by people who are very much in love with Jesus Christ. 

God knew we sinners tend to get confused which is why He established a Church and an office, the Papacy, to give our wandering minds a secure place where we can always drink deep of the Truth Jesus brought to us.

To those who think that the Papacy is about politics remember Blessed Pope John Paul II.  He was the darkest of dark horses. Yet he was precisely the sort of Pope the Church needed then.  You don't get that sort of miracle through Vatican politics. You need to look up a lot higher to find the source of that sort of amazing event. But the Church's history is littered with that sort of thing.

Do you think that Western Civilization would have stood against the hordes of the Muslim world at Lepanto and Vienna without the prayers of all those Catholics in Europe?

When  everything appears to be insane; when a thousand different voices shout out their own version of the truth on millions of web sites, thousands of TV channels, and innumerable Facebook pages be at peace.  You can find all the Truth necessary for living a life of contentment and peace, even in the middle of the worst tribulations imaginable, in the Church.

The battle has been won; Jesus took care of that. All that's left is for each of us to choose which side to be on.  Be smart go with the winners and follow Christ's Vicar on Earth, the Pope.