The honeymoon between the liberal media and Pope Francis is continuing at the expense of the pope’s relationship with conservative Catholics, with a top Fox News editor going so far as to call the pope a pandering, apologizing disappointment to the very people he’s meant to lead.
The headline to Fox News Editor Adam Shaw’s post says it all: “Pope Francis is the Catholic Church’s Obama – God help us.”
“Francis is beating a retreat for the Catholic Church, and making sure its controversial doctrines are whispered, not yelled – no wonder The New York Times is in love,” Shaw writes, noting:
“Just like President Obama loved apologizing for America, Pope Francis likes to apologize for the Catholic Church, thinking that the Church is at its best when it is passive and not offending anyone’s sensibilities.”
“Just like Obama thought he’d won over Putin by promising a reset, Francis thinks by talking vacuously about the poor, he will be respected.
“Just as Obama snubs Britain and Israel, Pope Francis swipes at practicing Catholics.’
“Like Obama, Francis is unable to see the problems that are really endangering his people. Like Obama he mistakes the faithful for the enemy, the enemy for his friend, condescension for respect, socialism for justice and capitalism for tyranny.”
Shaw undoubtedly has some good points, from an American conservative’s viewpoint – even a Catholic American conservative viewpoint.
The pope is disorienting in any number of ways, but anyone following a towering moral giant like Pope John Paul II or brilliant-to-the-point-of-inaccessible Pope Benedict would be disorienting.
And no American conservative who reads The New York Times regularly could help but be suspicious of a pope who generates such glowing coverage.
But American conservatives — especially American Catholic conservatives — need to remember the pope’s constituency isn’t the American electorate and – inconvenient as it might be – the papacy doesn’t run on, and isn’t run for, quadrennial election cycles.
“Render to Caesar what is Caesar’s; render to God what is God’s.”
American conservatives have their own Caesar to worry about.
Francis is in other hands.