How much has the Vicar of Christ evolved? He no longer feels the need to commiserate with the oppressed.
It was disheartening to observe the symbolism of Pope Benedict choosing to meet with aging dictators and none of the oppressed, especially Las Damas de Blanco, on his trip to Cuba. The belief that “we [laity] are the Church” takes on heightened significance. The good news is that we can dispense with the criticisms of Cardinal Ortega. He is a company man following company policy. Along those lines, Archbishop Wenski’s criticism of “Monday morning quarterbacking” by Cuban-Americans who questioned Ortega’s public acquiescence towards the regime, can now be seen as part of a concerted Church policy. I get it.
Fortunately, like politics, I believe that all worshiping is local, so this type of disappointment does not affect my faith. It also does not affect my commitment to my local Parish. It does affect how I respect Catholic Hierarchy. More perfunctory, less heartfelt. It does affect whom I choose to support with my thoughts and words. It does affect whom I choose to defend in the public square. It does affect where I direct my limited resources. See, I get it.
My Church speaks for me in matters of “definitive Magisterial teachings on faith and morals.” The Church does not speak for us on economics or politics. Mater si, Magistra, no! I get that too. I guess I’m evolving right along with Pope Benedict.
Benedict … hey, what’s in a name.
Update 03/29: Carlos Eire gets it – excerpt below – see blog post at Babalublog:
Today His Holiness Benedict XVI disowned Christ in Cuba. Today, he averted his eyes from the eleven million crucified Cubans in his midst, as he celebrated the holy sacrifice of the Eucharist. Today, he chose not to speak for the crucified, or to chasten their tormentors. Instead, he spent his time criticizing the so-called embargo, blessing the tyrants, and preaching a platitudinous sermon written for the theological faculty at the University of Regensburg rather than for the Cuban people.
Update 03/29: Andres Oppenheimer gets it – see excerpt from the Miami Herald:
Unless we learn in coming days that the pope did meet with the Ladies in White, the Vatican would have made a big mistake by not giving them at least the one-minute they were seeking. The Vatican has said that the pope is very much aware of their plight, but that there was not time in his agenda. Yet, the Vatican found time for the pope to hold an unscheduled 30 minute meeting Wednesday with Fidel Castro, who officially is no longer Cuba’s ruler, and was not scheduled to see him.