GUEST COLUMN
The Pope's Problem

April 2011By Andrew M. Seddon

Andrew M. Seddon, a native of England, writes both fiction and nonfiction, with over one hundred publication credits, including three novels: Red Planet Rising (Crossway Books, 1995), Imperial Legions (Broadman & Holman, 2000), and Iron Scepter (Xlibris, 2001). He contributed a chapter to Staying Fit After Forty by Don Otis (Harold Shaw, 2001), and is co-author of the devotional Walking With the Celtic Saints (Crossroad, 2004). He was editor of articles and columns for Christian Library Journal from 1998-2003; contributing editor of The Christian Communicator from 1998-2000; a book reviewer for Ethics & Medicine; and is a current member of the Authors’ Guild. Dr. Seddon is a family-practice physician in the SameDay Care department at Billings Clinic in Billings, Montana.

Even popes have problems. And Pope Benedict XVI is no exception.

His “Regensburg lecture” raised the ire of the Muslim world and provoked spasms of violence when he quoted the words of a Byzantine emperor. More recently, the comments the Holy Father made about condom use in Light of the World, a book-length interview with Peter Seewald, elicited outbursts of concern throughout the Western world.

Yes, the Pope has a problem: He expects something from his listeners and readers.

As a professor and theologian of many years’ standing, he’s accustomed to addressing educated audiences — audiences able to employ logical and rational skills, audiences that grasp subtleties and interpret remarks within their proper contexts, that take the time to evaluate and consider comments at length and don’t resort to knee-jerk reactions. Pope Benedict realizes his problem. In Light of the World, he said, “I had conceived and delivered the [Regensburg] lecture as a strictly academic address without realizing that people don’t read papal lectures as academic presentations, but as political statements.”


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Just the very basic self-discipline of reading over a few times some beneficial literature for better comprehension appears to have disappeared in this 'highly civilized' age. Yet, these are pretty much the same people who spend time repeating their golf swing [if they are 'adults'] many times over to gain mastery, or just hop from one Nike caption to a quick texting while having a ride in an amusement park [if they XY siblings]. One truly wonders why the Medieval period was ever dubbed the 'Dark Ages' and the current time the 'Enlightened Generation'. And this is in-between frequent 'diet' Coke where the amount of sugar taken is actually more than one can of regular Coke they would have enjoyed better.

It appears that the gates of hell aiming to prevail over the Church and the world are paying attention to every detail of their strategy as they implement it.
Posted by: humblesoldier2
May 06, 2011 09:45 AM EDT
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