Tag Archives: theology

Pope Francis, the Year of Mercy and Vatican II

Max Vodola   Catholic Theological College, Melbourne

logo-giubileo1Recently Pope Francis announced a Year of Mercy for the Catholic Church commencing on 8 December 2015, the feast of the Immaculate Conception, and concluding on the feast of Christ the King, 20 November 2016. This jubilee picks up a number of key themes emphasised by the Pope since the start of his pontificate: a Church called to go to the margins, a particular concern for the poor and the marginalised, the injunction for priests and bishops to have ‘the smell of the sheep’ on them by leaving the comfort of their offices and sacristies, and the Church called to be a ‘field hospital’ that heals the wounds and warms the hearts of the faithful. In demanding a more humble Church, Pope Francis is modelling what spiritual writers call ‘servant leadership’, giving immense power and prestige to his office precisely by forsaking the many trappings of a monarchical papacy that have evolved over centuries but in fact have little to do with the Gospel.

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