NOT ALWAYS IN THE MINI BUS
Have you noticed?
There is a battle raging and in some odd, but also many predictable places. Many seem to have forgotten that the same battle was waged even more improbably , when Cardinal Ratzinger ascended the Papal Throne.
It is the battle to publicly " own the Pope". That is to say that representatives or Media organs of one stamp or another, are claiming to see in the new Pope a supporter of their point of view and someone at variance with his predecessor. Some of the decisions of minor importance , that the new Holy Father has made have made it easier for this game to be played by the unscrupulous.
LAST TIME AROUND
Immediately after Pope Benedict's election, Despite having spent much of the last 25 years attacking Cardinal Ratzinger in the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith as " God's Rottweiler" and many other less attractice things, dissidents started claiming that he was not going to be like the John Paul !! whom they had loathed. In Australia, even here at the end of the Earth, into the role stepped former Priest Paul Collins become Media commentator, who used the exercise to gain some Media attention for his fading career.
It also enabled him, with no justification at all, to attack one of his pet " targets" and to claim that the new Pope would be hostile to Cardinal Pell who would now have much reduced influence in Rome. This was all patent nonsense of course, because Cardinal Pell had been very prominent in promoting the election of the new Pope in the Conclave, and in fact, went on over the years to have growing influence in the Holy See and more importantly, had always had a complete identity of views on important matters with Pope Benedict and for that matter, with his predecessor.
Similar ridiculous claims were being made overseas in dissidentsphere - with identical lack of substance.
The New Round
In the same way, but with a little more "mischief material" to play with, the Media and the dissidents they delight in promoting, have seized upon minor peripheral differences in style between Pope Francis and Pope Benedict XVI to push the same type of argument. And the arch liberal New York Times has been prominent in giving the effort a very personal twist promoting as an effective rebuke to the Pontificate of Pope Benedict XVI the decisions of Pope Francis not to wear the Mozzetta, the red shoes, the Pectoral Cross from the Holy See, not to use the Papal Car on day one, to go and collect his belongings and pay his accommodation bill, to celebrate his Mass for the Church with the Cardinals in Italian and not Latin etc., etc.
And that effort has been taken up by numerous dissidents indeed.
No effort at all, on their part, is made to even note that in everything he has said, Pope Francis is in every respect consistent with the orthodoxy of teaching by Pope Benedict XVI and for that matter, his predecessor Blessed John Paul II .They will not acknowledge that the new Pope is different only in style from Pope Benedict XVI as he was from Blessed Pope John Paul II .
THE PURPOSE OF THE CAMPAIGNS
In both cases the campaigns have been intended to damage the reputation of the despised predecessor - despised by the liberal/dissident Press with its pre-occupation with the liberal social agenda - Abortion, Euthanasia, Homosexuality, Same sex " marriage",and the whole false spirit of the Council agenda.
AND HERE IS THE RUB
The concerted effort is being made to " capture" Pope Francis' teaching, to hijack it, just as the Second Vatican Council was hijacked by "the Council of the Media" which Pope Benedict XVI so effectively described in his very recent address to the Clergy of Rome before his Resignation became effective.
All that is necessary is to emphasise and put " spin" on what is useful to the rogues' cause and not report what is not " useful" to gradually form in peoples' minds a false picture of what the Pope is saying.
However three factors weigh heavily against their efforts:
. Pope Francis is a live, intelligent person and a very clear communicator - unlike the Second Vatican Council which was a cumbersome meeting whose true servants had not learned the skill of using modern communications effectively,
.The Church is now more fully alert to the danger of such manipulation , and,
.The modern means of communication including the Internet, and the various Social Media enable faithful Clergy and Laity, not to mention the Holy Father himself and the instruments of the Holy See to reach over the "heads" of the mainstream media and dissident clerics to communicate with the whole world.
Nevertheless , it is good to realise that " the game is afoot"!