|Pope Franics' interview could mean new chapter for Catholic Church (Photo: ReligionNews)|
Francis makes clear he sees the church role as pastor, not as doctrinaire enforcer as his predecessor did.
Saying the church should be a “home for all” and not a “small chapel” focused on orthodoxy makes him a revolutionary in terms of church thinking.
“It is not necessary to talk about these issues all the time,” he told Fr Antonio Spadaro, a fellow Jesuit.
Take that sex and gay marriage obsessed bishops and priests!
“The dogmatic and moral teachings of the church are not all equivalent. The church’s pastoral ministry cannot be obsessed with the transmission of a disjointed multitude of doctrines to be imposed insistently,” said Francis.
Pastoral ministry, ministering to those most in need is the signature of his papacy.
“We have to find a new balance, otherwise even the moral edifice of the church is likely to fall like a house of cards, losing the freshness and fragrance of the Gospel.”
As for gays Francis is unequivocal in refusing to condemn them.
“A person once asked me, in a provocative manner, if I approved of homosexuality,” he told Fr Spadaro. “I replied with another question: ‘Tell me: when God looks at a gay person, does he endorse the existence of this person with love, or reject and condemn this person?’ We must always consider the person.”
American Jesuit Father James Martin said “Some of the things in it really surprised me,” Fr Martin said. “He seems even more of a free-thinker than I thought - creative, experimental, willing to live on the margins, push boundaries back a little bit.”
Francis understands he must be direct in his views, These teachings are “clear” to him as “a son of the church,” Francis summarized his views “The proclamation of the saving love of God comes before moral and religious imperatives.”
How this compassionate caring pope got elected in conclave full of right wing cardinals is truly a miracle.
Long may he reign.