Everyone is jockeying for position to define Pope Francis for their own ideological purposes. If anyone actually read, and observed, what the Pope has actually said, they would find him to be faithful to his Lord, his faith, and his Church. Yes, he has some interesting things to say about economics--no, he is not a socialist. But what people fail to see is that Francis is not a crusader for dogmatic reform, but the reform of the Christian heart! Yes, he welcomes sinners. Not, however, in their sin, but in God's Merciful Love for them. Others must crusade for dogma; Francis crusades for Love.
Yet, to understand Pope Francis, you must first understand Mary, Mother of God.
"Sing and rejoice, O daughter Zion! See, I am coming to dwell among you, says the LORD. Many nations shall join themselves to the LORD on that day, and they shall be his people, and he will dwell among you, and you shall know that the LORD of hosts has sent me to you." Zechariah 2:14-17
Pope Francis, like Mary, rejoices as an obedient child of God at the arrival of the Christmas Savior. The Pope, moreover, like Mother Mary, embraces the maternal aspect of the Church, and therefore the disciple, in obediently preaching and baptizing all nations and all peoples. Yet, it all begins with Love. As Mary was the obedient handmaid of the Lord, letting what the angel had spoken to her 'be done to' her, Francis enlivens a Papacy with the same obedient faith.
Like Mary, Francis seeks, first, the birth of Mercy from the Christ child, then, secondly, the Cross of conversion will enter their lives.
"Your deed of hope will never be forgotten by those who tell of the might of God." Judith 13:18-19
Hope springs eternal in the faithful of the Lord!
Judith, an Old Testament hero of Israel, brought hope, literally, by beheading the tyrant, and enemy of Israel, Holofernes. Judith, moreover, foreshadowed Mary, the Mother of our Lord, who cut off the head of Satan with a simple fiat (yes) to God. Pope Francis, following this spiritual heritage, cuts off the powers of exploitation, and persecution of the poor and downtrodden, with his simple Marian poverty and simplicity in compassionate Truth.
If this threatens anyone, they should examine whom they really serve.
"Mary said, 'Behold, I am the handmaid of the Lord. May it be done to me according to your word.' Then the angel departed from her." Luke 1:26-38
Francis, quite simply, is not just another man. He is, rather, a man whose spirituality is immersed in the poverty of Marian humility. He is truly a blessing to the world as long as he remains poor in spirit. For contrary to the peacocks who run the world, and parts of the Church, he is a simple hand-servant of the Lord.
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