Defender of the faith
As a Roman Catholic, I was offended by your editorial "A Papal Person," which presents an erroneous view of our present pope and our church.
Indeed, Pope Francis exhibits decency and humanity, as did his predecessors. However, to say that he pushes back on his church's worst habits and meaner inclinations is not only dishonest but outrageously irrational. The Catholic Church is the No. 1 nongovernmental humanitarian organization in the world, and its resounding success in its social services, schools and hospitals, which serve people of every race, ethnicity, creed or no creed, is directly related to its steadfast faithfulness to Jesus Christ's teachings (unpopular in today's culture, as your op-ed proves) to love God and neighbor. The church's missionaries can be found serving people from every demographic, even those opposed to Christianity, in every corner of our world, including danger zones where it is inadvisable to travel.
To suggest that, in order to be viewed as kinder and gentler, the church should appease the permissiveness of our present society and accommodate a secular relativism, thereby embracing all behaviors and orientations contrary to what God himself has ordained, is ridiculously illogical. Are you honestly suggesting that it is better for the church to sacrilegiously and hypocritically ignore its founder and reason for existing, Jesus Christ? From all ages, the church's martyrs have preferred death to renouncing their faith, and you expect the church to now do otherwise? Should the church ignore the dangers inherent in our present age and, as a bad parent, allow its children (meaning all of us, even nonbelievers) to risk their own well-being in this life and, more importantly, the next, by not speaking out strongly on what is right and wrong in God's eyes and which should be obvious to our own moral code?
Jesus himself warned that one cannot serve two masters, and that if the world hated his followers, to know that the world hated him first.
Your op-ed seems to prove the truth of his words.