United in our differences: there is no other Catholic way to be united.So, for example, Fr Ray observes that:
... like much of what he [ie Pope Francis] says there is often a great deal of ambiguity ..and one of the comments on Fr Ray's post remarks that
... his [ie Pope Francis'] gift does not include precision of expressions of thought....The Bones, after placing Pope Francis' words alongside those of Pope Benedict XVI speaking on a the same occasion a year ago, asks:
Does anyone detect a shift in emphasis?I am amused by the sudden change from decrying perceived reluctance on the part of bishops and priests to do what they thought Pope Benedict wanted with regard to the Liturgy to a legitimising of disregard for the pastoral approach of Pope Benedict's successor, Pope Francis. It would appear that the idea of a "hermeneutic of continuity" has only lasted as long as it suited.
Now the "eastward gaze" of Pope Francis' homily becomes quite transparently obvious when it is placed alongside the address given the day before the Solemnity, to the delegation of the Ecumencial Patriarch of Constantinople, visiting Rome to join the celebration of the Solemnity. And the references to difference and to synodality gain their very specific, and not in the least big confusing or ambiguous character, from that "eastward gaze". In so far as it also has a "westward glance", the reference to the work of the Synod of Bishops - established after the Second Vatican Council as a continuing expression and realisation of collegiality rightly understood, and perhaps better characterised by the term "communion" - is equally un-problematic, though I had not previously taken cognisance of its ecumenical import in quite the way suggested here.
To confirm in unity: the Synod of Bishops, in harmony with the primate.I do actually think that, like Pope Benedict XVI before him, Pope Francis has a quite exquisite and precise choice of phrase. It is different in style to that of Pope Benedict, but in an absolute continuity with it; it has been most apparent in some of the strap lines emerging from his homilies at the morning Mass in Domus Santa Martha. The following is from Pope Francis's homily for Sts Peter and Paul , with my italics added:
In the Church, variety, which is itself a great treasure, is always grounded in the harmony of unity, like a great mosaic in which every small piece joins with others as part of God’s one great plan.... compared to Pope Benedict XVI's homily a year before (h/t to The Bones), again with my italics added and the suspicion that Pope Benedict was referring to a thought by Hans Urs von Balthasar:
we know that together we are all cooperators of the truth, which as we know is one and “symphonic”, and requires from each of us and from our communities a constant commitment to conversion to the one Lord in the grace of the one Spirit.As an exercise in use of the communications media, the Traditionalist minded who have sought to undermine Pope Francis' homily in the blogosphere appear to me to have scored an enormous own goal. Apart from feeling that they simply haven't "got it" as far as the homily and Pope Francis in general goes (they need to move out from their own limited territory in order to achieve that), their broadcasting of what they think others will make of it has rather given the views of those others a huge boost.
[In the context of the discussion of Pope Francis' homily, there is a very sensible analysis of how we should understand Pope Francis here: Understanding Pope Francis.]