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Pope’s plans thwarted by resistance in clergy, according to essay in Vatican newspaper

July 24, 2017

An article in the official Vatican newspaper L’Osservatore Romano argues that the “main obstacle” to the work of Pope Francis is resistance among Catholic priests and bishops.

“The clergy is holding the people back,” writes Father Giulio Cirignano. He argues that most lay Catholics have embraced the Pope’s vision for the Church, but the Pope’s plans for reform are held back by the opposition of “a good part of the clergy, at levels high and low.”

The author, a priest-theologian from Florence, attributes the resistance among clerics to an “old horizon, the horizon of habitual practices,” and the “modest cultural level” of many priests. Many priests do not truly understand the nature of faith, he said.


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  • Posted by: podo7551 - Jul. 25, 2017 4:15 PM ET USA

    We need to resist all efforts to secularize and make relative our beliefs !!!

  • Posted by: james-w-anderson8230 - Jul. 24, 2017 10:22 PM ET USA

    First it was conservative US Catholics. Now it seems more general. Maybe it is the Vatican and not everybody else.

  • Posted by: jalsardl5053 - Jul. 24, 2017 8:20 PM ET USA

    I'll stick as tenaciously to my conclusion drawn from their repeated charges, statements and "observations": since God is love, that's all that's needed; all this worldly concern emanates from a structure that is but an unnecessary accouterment.

  • Posted by: Jim Hanink - Jul. 24, 2017 6:13 PM ET USA

    As cited in Crux, Fr. Cirignano's reflections are, shall we say, ill-conceived. What we need is clear argument, not tendentious hectoring. For a start, most of the people in the world are of "modest cultural level." How easy it is to wish that "more Catholics were like me." (The good Lord knows how often I have!)

  • Posted by: mwean7331 - Jul. 24, 2017 5:48 PM ET USA

    Me thinks hidden in all that wordage is a criticism of the traditional, faithful to dictates of The true doctrine of our Church. Those who don't adhere to the Church of "nice". We don't "get with it" .Those who resist making the Church of Christ fit into the culture of the day. Where is the "nature of faith" in walking away from the tenets of Jesus Christ? I'll stay right where I am in my faith and hope to see you in the Heavenly realm

  • Posted by: feedback - Jul. 24, 2017 4:59 PM ET USA

    The essay has a gnostic flavor to it. It's not possible to take it seriously.