Vatican News has an interview with Cardinal-elect and Papal Nuncio to the USA, Archbishop Pierre
He does a great job trying to mitigate the damage Pope Francis’ did with his less than diplomatic remarks about the USA and so-called ideologies of Catholics in the USA.
Cardinal Elect Pierre also does a nice diplomatic response to the Synod on the Synod, but he misses the mark on who is causing the polarization in the USA as it concerns this papacy.
Here are a couple of answers from the Cardinal elect with my astute insights imbedded in RED:
Q:Let’s take one example, which is very, very important in the United States, the problem of migration. It's amazing to see that as soon as we speak about migration, politicians fight between themselves, and should not because, as you know, the United States has always been a country of migrants. This is the richness. This is the beauty of this country.
But the problem is that instead of considering the reality, we escape from the reality, and we take refuge in ideas, and these ideas, became ideologies. If you remain at the level of the idea of the ideology, necessarily, the person who does not share your idea, becomes your enemy. And so, you have to resolve the problem of your relationship with your enemy, which is impossible.
The polarization comes from there. There is a danger and we can observe it. This polarization, which is overwhelming at times, you see that in the political debate we have and we will have, in the next year or so. It's reproduced at times at all levels of the society, even in the Church. So, the Church is supposed to be inside the society, a place where we can dialogue, and in doing so, help the society to resolve its problem. (The biggest problem of migration to this country is between two realities, legal and illegal immigration. I am the child of two immigrants and I am also an immigrant. My father was a Canadian and legally became an American Citizen after more than 15 years in this country. My mother was an Italian immigrant and legally became an American Citizen. I was born in Italy prior to my mother’s citizenship and I have naturalization papers. Most Catholics and most Americans want legal migration not illegal. Politics has entered into it by encouraging illegal immigration which is a mortal sin and should be a crime. The other thing that polarizes in the religious sense, is when religious leaders castigate countries who do not accept migrants as they enter illegally without ever castigating the countries these people flee and challenging those countries to create a country where people want to stay and others want to go!)
(This is a wonderful comment and the Pope could learn from the good Cardinal elect how to be positive rather than so negative:) The Catholic Church has always been in the last 50 years remarkable in the fight against abortion, for example, and the pro-life groups and so forth. There has also been the huge generosity of the American Catholics to help the poor, and offer solidarity with the world. It’s amazing how the Catholic Church is helping the poor all over the place. It’s beautiful. I'm very happy to be the Nuncio in the United States for that reason.
Well, this is maybe the problem. We may be victim of this polarization which has been created inside the Church and which many groups try to feed to and frighten the people. I'm amazed to listen to so many people who are just rejecting the idea of synodality, of the Synod, not knowing what it is all about and thinking that the Pope has been elected Pope just to destroy the Church and to destroy the beauty of the Church. The Holy Father is not. And he has said that many times. On the contrary, he calls precisely a Synod on synodality. (Here the good cardinal elect needs to be challenged. We live in the Information Age, that a reality which the synodal Church must accept and confirm. But if people think that “the pope has been elected Pope just to destroy the Church and to destroy the beauty of the Church” they have gotten this idea directly from the Pope himself, his incoherence, his choosing of pro-abortion people to be in significant roles in the Church and choosing as an advisor Fr. James Martin who is a very polarizing figure in the Church of the USA. An ideologue might point this out but it is true despite the source!)
It's a moment when a number of Bishops representing the Bishops of the world, the laypeople at all levels of the Church, will consider, examine what has been done already at all levels of the Church, in order to evangelize better the people. This is the reason why. They are not meeting to invent a new Church or to create new structures. No, [they are meeting] just to examine what has been tried to evangelize better at the grassroots, and to see this works, or that is not working, and we will see. But the method will be listening, examining, discerning and listening to the Holy Spirit. This is what the Pope has repeated over and over and over. But some people don't want to listen to that. (The Pope has said he doesn’t want a new Church but a”different Church”. It is obvious from the facts that despite the pope’s insistent that this isn’t a political process, it is a political process and will politicize the Church as any country already is, especially the USA. Then the pope complains that people use methods appropriate to politics to lobby for their political bias—that is very American and we are good at it!)
I'm full of trust. I think it will work. It’s quite an undertaking. When John XXIII launched Vatican II, that was quite an undertaking. And if you want to be Christian today, one has to take some risks. We take risks not to destroy the Church but to build the Church.
Let's be honest, the society today and the Church lives in a kind of crisis. A lot of people, especially young people, are abandoning the Church because society is changing. The connection between faith and culture is less and less apparent. The transmission of the faith is not so easy today at all levels. For example, from parents, children, from teachers, students, from politicians, society and so forth. So, we need to reorganize a kind of connection, and synodality is about connection.
It's funny because we live in a society where we speak of connections all the time and people are more and more isolated, and more and more fascinated by their own idea. It's a kind of narcissism organized at the level of the world, and the method of justice, anti-narcissism, get together. (For the most part, it seems to me that the main point of this synod on synodality is to promote the LGBTQ+++ ideological agenda, to bring it to the Church and its highest levels of magisterium. In this regard it is all about narcissism applied to the Church’s anthropology of humanity created in the image and likeness of God, male and female. To change this anthropology for the ideology of the LGBTQ+++ lobby in the Church and world is to then change everything about the Church to include the Deposit of Faith, the nature of the Sacraments and the morality of the Church. In many ways this will lead to the anti-Church emptied of Scripture and Tradition. It will make us like the Anglican Community which has devolved into irrelevance for everyone.)