I was lucky enough to make another appearance on Catholic Weekend, SQPN’s weekly podcast/Google Hangout that has recently been an international chat about things happening in our own worlds, as well as the Catholic scene in our place and around the world. It’s such great fun chatting with people like Maria Johnson and Angela Sealana and Billy Newton and Captain Jeff, and I’ve happily stayed up late and got up early over the past couple of weekends to join them. You can check out the conversations here.
One of the hot topics this past weekend was the portrayal of Pope Francis by the media, and the continuation of the positive media that he has been receiving for the first four-and-a-half months of his pontificate. That has been demonstrated clearly again with the coverage I blogged about last week regarding the Pope’s comments on his flight back to Rome following World Youth Day, especially his comments about homosexuals.
As I said on the panel discussion over the weekend, following on from my blog, Pope Francis was saying nothing new and wasn’t changing any Church teaching or even interpretation of Church teaching, but you’d struggle to believe it from the media attention that was being generated and the way Francis’s comments were being reported.
One comment I made on Sunday (Australian time) was that I’d be interested to know — although it’s impossible to actually know — how the exact same comments Pope Francis made might have been reported if they had been made by Pope Benedict. I prognosticated that some other comment would have been plucked from the 2000+ words that were uttered on the plane and turned into the headline idea.
As if to support my argument, I direct you to this article. It’ll only take a few minutes to read it, but please read it right up until the end. And then spend a couple more minutes reading some of the comments; they’re very enlightening. Without giving too much away, it somewhat makes my point for me.