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Retreat to the Past (Sun Oct 15, 2006 9:17 am)

Since the Pope's Regensburg address various theories and observations have emerged. 1. " There is a definite agenda in this papacy and it has Germanic precision and logic". (from a close Vatican observer) 2. Clearly, Benedict had a definite purpose in mind and 3. It certainly was not the resulting alienation of Islam.

One idea offered is, " Benedict's invocation of the sins of another religion (in this case, Islam) is a natural extension of his effort to tamp down calls for reform by presenting Catholicism as an immutable exemplar of the religious ideal". (David Gibson, Toronto Star, Sept 30, 2006)

Pope Benedict's defense of the Greek philosophical underpinnings of pre-Vatican II ecclesiology implies that our understanding of church history, scripture, theology, philosophy, and even reality, has not changed since ancient times and there is no need for reformation.

The Pope urges that "We will succeed in .. (broadening our concept of reason and its application) only if reason and faith come together in a new way, if we overcome the self-imposed limitation of reason to the empirically verifiable, and if we once more disclose its vast horizons."

But these "vast horizons" must be more than fancy foot-work to reassert traditional Catholic certainties. A retreat to the past will not serve to escape the present and growing distrust of the Church's antiquated governance and past unrelenting quasi-infallibilities.

The good old days of "Father (Bishop, Pope) knows best" are over.

Other voices

Another Voice

Questions From a Ewe

Challenges Facing Catholicism
(Bishop Geoffrey Robinson in converation with Dr Ingrid Shafer)

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