Let’s leap into Chapter Two of Evangelii Gaudium and begin to explore “The Crisis Of Communal Commitment.” Pope Francis alludes to our culture of punditry, in which various people with various perspectives offer sage advice and direction. And yet with all this “wisdom,” we never seem to get anywhere.
50. Before taking up some basic questions related to the work of evangelization, it may be helpful to mention briefly the context in which we all have to live and work. Today, we frequently hear of a “diagnostic overload” which is not always accompanied by improved and actually applicable methods of treatment. Nor would we be well served by a purely sociological analysis which would aim to embrace all of reality by employing an allegedly neutral and clinical method. What I would like to propose is something much more in the line of an evangelical discernment. It is the approach of a missionary disciple, an approach “nourished by the light and strength of the Holy Spirit”.[JOHN PAUL II, Pastores Dabo Vobis 10.]
This chapter covers sections 50 through 109, and should take us up to the early days of Lent this year. In it we’ll look at economics, the parts most troublesome to conservatives. But others do not face stern words, including those who would persist in tearing at the fabric of Church unity.