|John Paul II blessing the monster Maciel|
It's no secret that I view the canonization of John Paul II as nothing less than a travesty and an illustration that liberal Catholics who want to believe that Pope Francis is substantively a breath of fresh air are deluding themselves. In response to a piece by Peggy Noonan - who seems to have lost all reason - comparing Pope John Paul II to Barack Obama in terms of leadership, Andrew Sullivan lets loose with an honest assessment of John Paul II's reign that bares repeating and which ought to be mandatory reading for every churchgoing Catholic. Here are the money quotes:
Under John Paul II and his orthodoxy-enforcer, Joseph Ratzinger, the scope for any dialogue within the church was essentially ended. Whole areas of theological debate were ruled impermissible; discussions about faith and morals were also discouraged and any hints of heterodoxy, i.e. thinking, were monitored and punished. John Paul II’s papacy was capable of detecting the most trivial form of theological dissent and punishing it relentlessly, while it found itself miraculously blind when it came to the endless rapes and abuse of children and adolescents that we know now were endemic.
This wasn’t leadership; it was the abdication of basic moral responsibility for the church John Paul II ran. And these were not only crimes of commission but also of omission. A monstrous figure like Marciel Macial was lionized by John Paul II even as he sold drugs, was a bigamist, abused countless young men, and even raped his own son. Cardinal Bernard Law was rewarded for his own disgusting cover-up of child-rapists with a sinecure in Rome.
Open your eyes, Peggy. There is world outside your 1980s nostalgia-fest. And it’s as different from your reality as “seems” is from “is”.
I may not always agree with Andrew - who I did get to meet a few years ago - but when he lets loose on someone, few do it better.