Pope Envy

JamesMartin.jpgI read Fr James Martin had a half-hour meeting with the world’s most famous Jesuit. Though I don’t want to go there, I can imagine the spinning in some Catholic circles. Why wasn’t time made available for the dubi-cardinals? Was someone at the meeting required to reiterate the badness of sex outside of sacramental marriage? Why wasn’t someone defrocked?

I think meetings like this are good things. Fr Martin seemed to comment on the positivity, and that’s usually what you get when you meet a pastor. Criticism usually comes from the boss, from social media, and the gossip circles.

But positively, it got me thinking about what I’d want to discuss if I were given a thirty-minute chunk on a pope’s calendar. Ten years ago, I think I’d chat about adoption. Twenty years ago, liturgy might have been the topic. Thirty years prior to today, I’d just be satisfied with some morsels of life’s discernment.

Today, I think I’d want to discuss discouragement in the Church. Admit it: we most all have it.

Rather than lament or envy about what someone else got to bend the Holy Father’s ear, what topic would you broach if you were sitting in the chair on the other side of the papal desk.

About catholicsensibility

Todd lives in Minnesota, serving a Catholic parish as a lay minister.
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1 Response to Pope Envy

  1. Liam says:

    Maybe you’d consider this evidence of the topic you might raise, but another way to look at it is humility and openness, but in my experience don’t really want to hear the kind of things I’d tend to say if I were to expose my soul to them, as it were. Clerics outside of Reconciliation especially. (It’s one reason I embrace Reconciliation, Rite 1 – it brings about a side to priests I don’t see as much of in other contexts or even in other rites of that sacrament, and unlike spiritual direction invites incisiveness and concision, which helps the otherwise introspective.)

    So what I meant above by humility and openness is that I don’t assume a meeting between me and the Pope is about my setting the topic, as it were. Maybe it will be, maybe not. I would try to be open enough not to have any other agenda other than to be aware and attentive and engage as moved in the moment. The Pope might need someone to listen to him without an agenda for a change. Maybe we’d just pray together. (In recent years, I nearly always have two rosaries with me if I have my man-satchel with me. When I witnessed how my late mother, who died 5 years ago next week, could be summoned out of delirium and associated delusions in advanced old age to join in praying the rosary and how fiercely and yet serenely it would just flow out of her vexed body, mind and soul, it was an epiphany that I will never forget – that probably wouldn’t happen with the Liturgy of the Hours except if she had been a nun in an order with conventual office).

    My scope gets more intimate as I age. I spend more attention on the God’s little ways that work in us like drips of water on ice-cold rock in winter sunshine.

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