Tuesday, March 7, 2023


As Pope Francis celebrates His Holiness’ 10th Anniversary on March 13, many are reflecting on his papacy. 

Even his magic circle of advisors acknowledge that he has been a very divisive figure and His Holiness has to own that and not blame it on the polarizing factions His Holiness has enabled or at least exacerbated. 

Because Pope Francis is so much a part of the period of Church history of his youth, the 1970’s, I know, because I was schooled in it, that pastoral theology was at its zenith in the 1970’s.

In my very progressive seminary, we had all kinds of pastoral theology classes, courses and pastoral experiences as a part of our academic preparation for ordination. 

This emphasis on pastoral theology and care was in reaction to a more doctrinaire approach that priests took with their parishioners, more black and white, more condemning and quick to anger and quick to judge of the pre-Vatican II period.  I think many Catholics of the pre-Vatican II era of the Church know that there was an authoritarianism in the clergy and many of the religious orders of men and women. They weren’t always very kind and a bit rigid and inflexible with the foibles of their flock.

I think in the post Vatican II era, and even within communities of traditionalists with the TLM, pastoral theology and care abounds in a way that it may not have abounded prior to the Second Vatican Council.

Pope Francis’ papacy has emphasized pastoral care, flexility in pastoral care and an embrace of sinners in a loving way. But he does preach conversion and calls for turning away from sin. And he names the worst kind of Catholic as one who is not just a sinner but also thoroughly corrupt. The corrupt risk the fires of hell.

Pastoral theology is just that, theology. It is an art. It is not a science and it certainly isn’t a dogma. Thus the manner in which pastoral theology is applied to particular situations varies from clergy to clergy. 

Thus this commentary from the the triple super ultramontane blog, “Where Peter is” which gives us some hope in a Church where it appears the pope and his magic circle want to imitate liberal Protestantism that has led to its demise:


Press title:

McElroy’s Pastoral Proposal is not Francis’s

I have written many times before about the difference between grave matter and mortal sin. The Catechism identifies grave matter as a breaking one of the Ten Commandments, whereas mortal sin is grave matter and “knowledge of the sinful character of the act” and “consent sufficiently deliberate to be a personal choice” 


rcg said...

He had up until the end. He thinks it’s reasonable to change doctrine to suit pastoral needs yet doctrine and pastoral care do not overshadow each other…..until it suits the Birkenstock crowd. The final paragraph dog-whistles Trump and the excruciatingly tiresome election process of the United States. This is intended to hobble any possible disagreement by forcing the opposition to prove they aren’t election deniers, Pope Francis haters, or Vatican II deniers before addressing the position he puts forth as a sort of preemptive ad hominem attack. But the first 75% was pretty good.

TJM said...


Thanks for taking one for the team. I’ll pass. When a “catholic” attacks the most pro life President in US history I know we are dealing with a nutcase.

TJM said...


Maybe this "author" would like to spin this? Biden is giving a biological male a "Women of Courage" to a biological male. This should cause even the most leftwing of bishops and priests pause.

"While Women’s History Month was intended as a time to honor the achievements of women throughout history, the Biden administration has chosen this March to emphasize that they believe women are dependent on abortion for basic equality. They also seemed to struggle with the definition of what a woman is, choosing to give a “Women of Courage” award to a transgender activist who is a biological male.

In President Biden’s statement proclaiming Women’s History Month, he said that “despite significant progress, women and girls continue to face systemic barriers to full and equal participation in our economy and society. Last year, the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade, stripping away a constitutional right from the American people and the ability of millions of women to make decisions about their own bodies, putting their health and lives at risk.”

Great Catholic, ain't he?

rcg said...

TJM, I really hate politics, but I see our president posturing early for his base at the expense of serious problems for our nation. My wife’s uncle once named a mule after a famous political figure that had crossed him. I would like to do that, but I would need so many….

TJM said...


Notice how Father K runs away when the truth is exposed? No defense for Biden? He’s probably extra sad that a federal judge in Florida ruled that Florida can defund Planned Parenthood and the taxpayers do not have to pay for abortions