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Red shoes, the papal apartments, and Petrine authority

By Phil Lawler (bio - articles - email) | Apr 01, 2013

Let's see if I understand this correctly: You say you can't respect the authority of Pope Francis because, by not moving quickly into the apostolic palace, he's denigrating the authority of the papacy? So it's the apartments that make the difference? 

St. Peter didn't live in the papal apartments. He didn't wear red shoes and the mozzetta. Yet he had authority for some reason

If you decide how much authority the Pope has, he really doesn't have much authority, does he?


Some readers have asked whether this post is directed at anyone in particular. Well, if the shoe fits,...

Phil Lawler has been a Catholic journalist for more than 30 years. He has edited several Catholic magazines and written eight books. Founder of Catholic World News, he is the news director and lead analyst at See full bio.

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  • Posted by: koinonia - Apr. 01, 2013 5:57 PM ET USA

    It is clear that Pope Francis was elected validly after the resignation of Pope Benedict; the Chair is filled by Pope Francis I. It's early in the pontificate. It has been almost unanimously acknowledged that some curious or at minimum interesting decisions have been made. Most Catholics are simply watching with a perhaps slightly elevated intensity. There are indications that change is a-coming. Relax and say an extra prayer or two. The bishop of Rome asked as much when introduced to us.