Sunday, July 3, 2016

"Go your ways: behold, I send you forth as lambs among wolves." Luke 10:3

Pope Francis says that the shepherd should smell like the sheep. I have always thought that it is actually the other way around, that the sheep should come to smell like the shepherd (all, ultimately, acquiring the sweet aroma of Christ).

Today's Gospel adds something to the discussion, which seems to be largely omitted from Pope Francis' preaching: the warning against the wolves!

Luke 10:3 "Go your ways: behold, I send you forth as lambs among wolves. That by your innocent and holy lives, through the power of My grace working in you, you may change the wolf into the lamb, i.e., convert evil men from the error of their way. Fear not, therefore, for under My protection no harm can befall you. For as S. Ambrose says, 'the good Shepherd takes care that the wolves do His flock no harm.'"

Pope Francis' rhetoric, hyper-critical of the clergy (thereby encouraging the world's anti-clericalism), practically ignores the fact that the Lord sent his disciples out as sheep among wolves, and that, therefore, one of the primary tasks of the shepherd is to guard the flock against the wolves.

The guarding aspect of the faith Pope Francis largely neglects, while myriad upon myriads of the sheep are lured into evil; and the shepherds (including His Holiness Himself) keep quiet! It is a total lack of mercy to thus tolerate and encourage the wolves!

N.B. A wolf is anyone who is bent upon living in mortal sin: obstinate in grave sin. They (the wolves) must be corrected or expelled, for the good of the lambs. It is an essential aspect of the Gospel on the role of the ministers of the Gospel. The erring must be corrected! And the innocent must be protected! If the priests (and bishops and popes) don't do it, who will!

P.S. In this regard recall the mission statement of Pope Benedict at his inaugural Mass as Pope: "Pray for me, that I may not flee for fear of the wolves." Cf. Problem Resolution is a Primary Pastoral Duty of Bishops.
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