Not all Catholics or protestant Christians were pleased with the “flip-flopping” by Pope Benedict XVI on subjects such as creation, allowing room for evolution, and his handling of sex abuse cases.
"'When forced to, he talks about the crimes but ignores the cover-ups, uses the past tense as if to suggest it's not still happening,' said David Clohessy, the executive director of the Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests. 'He has vast powers and he's done very little to make a difference,'" reported USA Today.
He is still referred to as the “conservative” pope who has served as pope for nearly eight-years. He stood solid for the Bible on the gay issue, and remained firm regarding the Catholic's stance of (anti)birth control. The Wall Street Journal remembered his rise to power with these words,
“He rose to prominence as a young theologian in the wake of World War II, calling for modernization in the church, and decades later cemented his influence as the Vatican's chief of doctrine, championing church tradition and reining in Catholics who challenged it.”
His service is remembered for standing for principles by one close to him.
"He stood for the idea that certain principles are nonnegotiable," said Cardinal Julián Herranz (WSJ)
In these last months he tried to get into the technology scene by becoming a tweeter. It was a nice gesture, but never amounted to much. This left him on the outside of the current age and separated him a little bit from the younger generation.
His lack of ability to fully latch onto modern technology made it hard for him to go against the tide of many social trends which he is known to have called "dictatorship of relativism". He had that one right. We do live in an age of “everything is relative”. It is, however, not helping societies to thrive.
Anytime you go against the absolute truth of God's word you then are relying on “made-up” truth that only lives in an individuals mind. This leads to violent societies and sinful nations. After-all, if there are no absolutes, then “whatever feels good” to the individual becomes what is their moral law. God is clear, he will judge sin, and God is also very clear about what sin is.
Many have said that Christians are responsible for all the evil in the world. In his “New Years” speech to the Catholic church, Benedict spoke of the evils of this age being “not their fault”, but instead the fault of those outside the Catholic Church. Was he talking to protestants, or to the secular world? It is obvious that everyone has to take responsibility for the way the world is. We all have to step-it-up and “be” what God says to be in this word. Then and only then will we see the darkness of violence and evil be overcome by light.
We are the light of the world the Bible says. “You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do they light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a lamp stand, and it gives light to all who are in the house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven," Matthew 5:14-17. Sadly, Christians, whether Catholic or protestant, have failed to let the light of Jesus shine as effectively as Jesus did, and he is our example.
The Catholic church, being comprised of 1-billion people, have a huge responsibility in this as their influence is “huge” and they have the same responsibility to carry the name Christian honorably as the rest of us. This is why it is so important we all pray about who becomes the next pope. He needs to be one who follows Jesus Christ first and foremost and not the social tides that are so often in opposition to God's word.
So whether you are happy, sad or indifferent to see Pope Benedict XVI resign, it is every Christian's responsibility to care about the future of this world. The next pope will have a large influence on the moral status of this world, and we all have to live together in it. God instructs us to pray for our leaders in 1 Timothy chapter 2. When Christians get serious with God, it will be amazing the “great” things God will do.
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