The pope, the church & the future

Pope!The church. We all know this enormous enterprise. Whether you believe or not, you cannot avoid seeing all the work the church has done to contribute to the society we now have. But time waits for no-one and it looks like the church is slowly losing its touch. It’s importance is dwindling. It might take a hundred or more years but the church is heading towards a future where its importance will be negligible. It will stop being the spiritual anchor for our society.

There were my thoughts, until I read some recent quotes from the current pope.

Paus Franciscus said:

“I prefer a church which is dirty and hurt for being on the streets helping to a church that is unhealthy for sitting inside holding on to the status quo”

“Priests need to get out onto the streets, into the mud and not be a passive sour prune.”

Could it be true? Might there be a future yet for the church and will the pope manage to have an affect on the enormous bureaucratic organisation the church has become? Will he really manage to reform the church from being a place to worship and a place to go if all else has failed to a place of hope offering support and help to those who need it and a place to go in order to improve yourself and help others?

The pope was elected to be the man of the year 2013. It seems a good choice. The wheels of change are set in motion and slowly seem to be starting to move towards a better future.

If he manages to change the church it will be a change for the better. No longer will the association of your actions be lost. Donations, confessions, lectures and singing will suddenly have a direct result. A donation is for giving help directly to someone who needs it. A confession is not for getting your soul clean but for getting advice. A lecture is for getting general advice and the singing together is just for enjoyment together. Stop with the bread and wine. Make the church into a place that is a nice place to be. Turn on the radio, have hobby afternoons, parties for volunteers, help afternoons, open the church for professionals providing help, social training, education, bridge tournaments, chess-events, revalidation help, you name it. Start to fight the individualism and focus on the force of the many, exactly as Jesus tried to show us more than 2000 years ago.

Change the story behind the cross. Stop it from being a symbol for a crucifixion of a man, but make it into a symbol of being together. A symbol that shows that personal beliefs are important but are less so that helping each other and working together to make our world a truly better place for those who are to follow in our footsteps.

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