It’s almost as usual: On the flight back from a trip abroad, Pope Francis holds a press conference for journalists on the plane. He is not stingy with small revelations or hints – he loves to play with the public.
Despite the Pope’s earlier denials, but perhaps because of this, three journalists once again questioned the pontificate’s possible abdication.
Pope’s possible resignation
Answers are pointed in the same direction as in the statements given earlier:
I don’t know… I don’t think I can follow the speed of travel as before. I think at my age and with this limitation I have to hold myself back a bit to be able to serve the church or […] To think about the possibility of withdrawal. Honestly: It’s not a disaster, we can fill the Pope’s chair, it’s not a problem.
The journalists of Paris Match magazine were particularly stubborn: François once admitted that he might retire. Francis then:
When Yahweh says, When Yahweh tells you to go forward, you go ahead (…) The Lord may say retreat. It is the Lord who commands.
Regarding other rumours, he clarified:
On the subject of my resignation, I would like to thank you for a beautiful article written by one of you. […] It’s a good job as a journalist who expresses her opinion, but meanwhile looks at all the signs, not just words, statements, in a secret language. Knowing how to interpret signs, or at least trying to interpret them, is a beautiful piece of work, for which I thank you very much.
Finally, on the last question on the subject, the Pontiff said:
The door is open, that’s a common option, but to date I haven’t knocked on that door, I haven’t said I’m going to that room, I didn’t want to think about that possibility. But that doesn’t mean I won’t start thinking about it the day after, right? […] But right now, honestly, no. This journey was also a bit of a test… It is true that you cannot travel in this state, you may have to change your appearance a little, reduce it, rearrange it… but the Lord will tell. The door is open, that’s right.
New statements about contraception?
One question mentioned the possibility of a re-evaluation of a complete ban on contraception, and the Pope began his answer by saying, “It is very timely.” However, with the rest of the answer he made a long digression on the development of the dogma, quoting St. Vincent de Lérins to give the clear answer.
attack on tradition
But it also opened a new opportunity for him to attack the Conservatives:
Today so many people call themselves traditional. No, they are not traditional, they are ‘pro-march’ going backwards. It is a sin. Someone said that the tradition is that it is the living faith of the dead, while these ‘backward people’ who call themselves traditionalists are the dead faith of the living. […] Tradition is precisely the root, the impetus to move forward in the Church, and it is always vertical. And ‘march-backstep’ is a backstep, it is always closed. It is important to understand the role of tradition, which is always open, like the roots of a tree, and the tree grows. In other words, if one does not change, he is not in the true tradition of the Church.
A journalist asks the Pope whether it is a good approach in papal communication to publish an unsigned note about the German synodal path. The answer is revealing: “First of all, this communiqué was written by the State Secretariat. It was a mistake to say no. (…) Not signing it as the Secretariat of State was a mistake, but a procedural error, not a bad faith. ”And Francis continues:“ On the synod I wrote a letter, I did it alone: a month of prayer, reflection, counseling. And I won’t say much more than what I had to say about Synod Street, and this letter I wrote two years ago is from the Pontifical Magisterium on Synod Street. […] I bypassed curiae because I did no consultation (with curiae), none. I have made my journey as a pastor for a church seeking a way out as a brother, as a father, and as a believer. And here is my message. I know it’s not easy, but this letter has it all.”
If this is the only answer to the synodal path, then of course the matter is lost. Because apart from criticism and explanation, nothing in this papal letter seems to have slowed the growth of this cancer that is developing quietly on the other side of the Rhine and which has begun to metastasize through the synod on the synod. Clearly there is an urgent need to operate and remove this cancer which will soon be everywhere.
The full text of the Reese press conference is below Available at this address >
Devoted web advocate. Bacon scholar. Internet lover. Passionate twitteraholic. Unable to type with boxing gloves on. Lifelong beer fanatic.