Throwing cold water on Francis frenzy

The new pope Francis has been getting great press just for seeming like an ordinary human being in his everyday interactions. But we should not overlook the fact that on the major issues that have defined the church so negatively, he seems fully accepting of those reactionary doctrines.

The only sign of flexibility was in 2010 when he suggested adoption of civil unions in Argentina. But that was only because he was trying to block the even worse (in the church’s eyes) legalization of same sex marriage. But that ploy failed on two counts: his fellow Argentinian bishops would not go along, and the Argentine government went ahead and legalized it anyway.

Bill Maher decides to bring everyone back to Earth from their Francis frenzy.


  1. Ben P says

    I take a pretty relaxed perspective on this.

    There was virtually zero chance that the college of cardinals, 70 elderly, mostly white, men who are virgins have taken a vow of chastity, and most of whom were hand-picked by Benedict, would elect a genuine progressive.

    Considering the source, I think a Jesuit with a chemistry degree who would consider civil unions in a pinch and seems to genuinely care about the poor is about as liberal of a result as you could hope for.

    And as far as media coverage, there’s always hagiographies of a new pope. That’s par for the course.

  2. Rob Grigjanis says

    There was never any hope of a progressive pope. The last Cardinal (I think) who could have remotely been called a “liberal” was Carlo Martini, who died in 2012.

    Since the late Pope John Paul II assumed the papacy, there has been an effort to remake the hierarchy by appointing bishops who would unquestioningly follow Vatican thinking started under John Paul. Ironically, it was John Paul who elevated Martini to the episcopacy in his first year as pope. After that, John Paul mainly appointed conservative bishops.

  3. Ulysses says

    “And what other business could you be caught running a child sex ring forever and you still keep your customers?”

  4. says

    “The new pope Francis has been getting great press just for seeming like an ordinary human being in his everyday interactions.”

    I agree this is what his admirers seem to be most pleased with. I don’t see the benefit in a man who claims to be Number 4 in the Christian hierarchy appears very, mundanely, and unmagically human, though. I’m not surprised to see him act human, but I can see why his followers are. But why are they happy with such a result?

  5. previously-chrisj says

    Well, when you compare him with his predecessor and a great many of his subordinates, “ordinary human being” is off the top of a great many scales -- compassion, moral behaviour, basic human decency…

    Essentially they’re delighted he isn’t a clone of either his predecessor or Jimmy Saville. As far as we know, anyway.

  6. MNb says

    What I think funny is the reaction of the Dutch orthodox-protestants. At one hand they think the pope is the anti-christ as described in Revelations. At the other hand they grudgingly have to admit that most of his views are exactly the same as theirs ….
    The orthodox-protestant newspaper Reformatorisch Dagblad did a live coverage of the pope’s inauguration on its website. After complaints that the coverage was neutral, ie didn’t have any negative comments, the paper stopped the coverage. A day later they published a letter written by some vicars, which contained those complaints. The paper reacted with an editorial.

    The site is down every Sunday.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *