“Je suis Charlie”? No. Mais: “Je suis le Pape François!” Oui!

Pope Francis - Kolvenbach

Father Jorge Bergoglio with Father Peter-Hans Kolvenbach

There was a particularly ugly, brutal promise of a verbal attack on Pope Francis on the internet recently coming from traditional-ism-ists. It originated with someone wanting to dig up dirt if possible, on Pope Francis, with dirt being what is imagined to have been reported by the Superior General of the Jesuits back in the day, Peter-Hans Kolvenbach against Father Bergoglio. What is summarized here in Wikipedia is thought to be incomplete in the imagination of the would-be attacker:

After returning to Argentina to take up his new post at San Miguel, Father Bergoglio served in that capacity until 1986. He was removed as rector by the Jesuit superior-general Peter Hans Kolvenbach because Bergoglio’s policy of educating the young Jesuits in direct pastoral work and in popular religiosity was opposed to the world-wide trend in the Society of Jesus of emphasizing social justice based on sociological analysis, especially promoted by the Centro de Investigaciones y Accion Social (CIAS).

I would like to point out two things. It seems that there is an agreement with Father Kolvenbach over against Father Bergoglio. I find that to be amazing.

  1. That Father Bergoglio would do direct pastoral work instead of spending all his time in ideology is implied to be a most terrible thing, when, instead, it is the best thing to do.
  2. That Father Bergoglio would insist on popular piety (Rosary, Novenas, Sacred Heart of Jesus, etc.) instead of spending all his time in ideology is implied to be a most terrible thing, when, instead, it is the best thing to do.

That the Center for Research and Social Action is purely ideologically based, cut off from anything to do with the faith on purpose, is summarized in their own statement:

CIAS is non-sectarian in that, independently of personal convictions, culture and creed, it welcomes dialogue and cooperation with anyone who understands politics as service to others, especially the poor.

Of course, if you are independent of absolutely everything and everyone else, you have no basis from which to dialogue with another. You are vacuous. You don’t exist. There is no dialogue possible with a non-interlocutor. Father Bergoglio took the better path, that of reverence before Jesus, God Incarnate.

Pope Francis often says that God forgives weakness, but that the one who is corrupt may not want that forgiveness. Lusting to rejoice in the downfall of another, it seems to me, brings the fault of that downfall (whether there was a downfall or not) upon oneself, does it not? We must be careful. Humble. Seeking to build each other up instead of tear each other down. Why sadden the Holy Spirit? Let us rejoice in the Lord together.

And so, what is there to say except make a statement of solidarity with the Pope:

“Je suis Charlie”? No. Mais: “Je suis le Pape François!” Oui!


Filed under Missionaries of Mercy

2 responses to ““Je suis Charlie”? No. Mais: “Je suis le Pape François!” Oui!

  1. SognPlaci

    You may emotionalize this matter a bit too much. It is a fact that when Bergoglio became an auxiliary bishop of Buenos Aires (I remember when this happened), most Jesuits, especially the Argentinean Jesuits, were not happy. Let us facts remain facts. Further I do not believe that there is any need for “Je suis Pape François”. The “Je suis Pape François” crowd is already big enough.

  2. elizdelphi

    I saw that attempt to dig up dirt and this is an amazingly good response to that.

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