Catholics truly deserve a principled pope

Oramus pro Spiritum voluntatem. We pray for the will of the Holy Spirit. After Pope Benedict XVI announced that he would resign on Feb. 11, he said he could almost physically feel the strength of all the prayers said for him. Let the Holy Spirit’s will be done in Conclave.

As a Catholic, I can report that there was a considerable amount of disturbance among my fellow parishioners at Student Mass & Meal. The source of discontent was the column by Brad Erthal titled, “Catholics everywhere deserve better after Pope Benedict XVI’s reign.” His comments about our Pope Emeritus, His Holiness, Benedict XVI, offended me and many of my friends.

It is highly offensive to misrepresent what a group thinks, even if understandably done in complete ignorance. I could point to a Washington Post poll that shows 76 percent of American Catholics, and 54 percent of Americans as a whole viewed Pope Benedict in a favorable light. But to point to a poll is almost a violation of my faith.

It is often said that the Catholic Church is not a democracy. Mr. Erthal correctly pointed out that the clergy refuses to even discuss changing the Church’s teachings on marriage, abortion and priestly celibacy.

But the answer to why this is can be found in his incorrect conclusion: that Pope Benedict was a reactionary. To the contrary, his eight-year reign upheld all the teachings that have been upheld by 264 Popes before him for 2,000 years. In other words, my Church does not break its faith or tenants.

If the Church is not a democracy, then who has the power? Jesus Christ.

In the end, we Catholics answer not to the world, but to Jesus Christ. Are we living and upholding his teachings? Is the Pope Catholic? These are the questions that truly matter in this situation.

David Destafanis is a junior majoring in political science and history.

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