Posted by: frroberts | April 26, 2017

Interesting Commentary Re: The Benedict Option and Pope Francis

Rod Dreher has written a very interesting book on how to confront post-Christian society, The Benedict Option.   To make a long story short, Dreher argues that Christians should respond to modern secularism by regrouping and being more intentional about forming a stronger self-identity in order to proclaim the Gospel anew.  The book builds on Alasdair MacIntyre’s landmark book, After Virtue.

An Italian Vaticanista points out that Pope Francis proposes a different approach:

Pope Francis’s second answer to the evangelization question concerns themes. To draw a comparison, St. John Paul II’s pontificate was characterized by the issue of identity and Christian primacy. Benedict XVI focused on the search for God as a consequence of the search for Truth. Pope Francis prefers to focus on language, using terms that are closer to secular culture, as in the case of the “culture of the encounter” – as if he believed that only by getting closer to the other will the the other be attracted by Christian faith.

With Pope Francis the Church’s vocabulary was then loaded up with terms that belong to the secular and secularized cultural world: culture of the encounter, sustainable development – later Christianized into “integral human development” (which is nevertheless a sociological term)the duty to protect (a term used in diplomatic language), fraternity, non-violence.

That’s the way Jesuits have always evangelized. They use a vocabulary that is not part of the Catholic tradition in order to attract people to the Catholic tradition. In the end, Francis tries to speak the language of the world, even though to do so risks generating some turmoil within the Catholic world.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: