Surprising Popes

Posted: November 20, 2012 by Ty in Musings, Spirituality
Tags: , , , , , , ,

English: PORTRAIT OF JOHN XXIII Español: IMAGE...

English: PORTRAIT OF JOHN XXIII Español: IMAGEN DE JUAN XXIII (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Pope Benedictus XVI

Pope Benedictus XVI (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Pope's Blessing

Pope’s Blessing (Photo credit: alykat)

Pope Pius XII called Pastor Angelicus, was the...

Pope Pius XII called Pastor Angelicus, was the most Marian Pope in Church history. Bäumer, Marienlexikon (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

What does the Catholic Church need today?  A renewal of the papacy, Benedict XVI is not just getting it. I have been enjoying reading a tomb of secular church history by a reporter, Barrett McGurn (1962) A Reporter Looks at the Vatican where he writes at the change of papacy from Pius XII (sadly dubbed Hitler‘s Pope) to John XXIII.

There are some gems in here aside from the joviality, and personability that we have seen in the papacy of John Paul II, as well as the compassion.

There is Pius XII decision not to deride Hitler, which some saw as ascenting to what the Nazi’s were doing, but was part of a plan possibly to keep the Nazi’s from looking to closely at the Catholic Church in Germany so they could act to aid the citizens under extermination orders. Or that early in his papacy noting the hungry, he began to sell the jewels of the Vatican to feed them (Note: Benedict, perhaps it is time to liquidate some assets to aid in ending world hunger, releasing the archives to start up universities in the developing world, and art treasures to launch museusm in the same areas, the world will change when we live out of our mendicant status).

Or John XXIII, the peasant pope, who renewed the practice of walking the stations of the cross with church members, but not in the artistocratic churches, but rather the slums. Or a pope that would sneak out for walkabouts, would encourage others to take hold of the power of their positions to get things done, and who blessed the workers on May Day celebrations by celebrating along with them.

It is time for the church to truly renew their ties to the peoples of the world, to descend into the depths of poverty, so that those in poverty may ascend and build the reign of God…

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