Pope Francis told a group of US bishops that, like them, he is accused of not listening to the Holy Spirit when he does something someone disagrees with – like not mentioning married priests in his Amazon document. Source: CNS.
“You could see his consternation when he said that for some people it was all about celibacy and not about the Amazon,” said Bishop William A. Wack of Pensacola-Tallahassee.
“He said some people say he is not courageous because he didn’t listen to the Spirit,” the bishop told CNS yesterday. “He said, ‘So they’re not mad at the Spirit. They’re mad at me down here,'” as if they assume the Holy Spirit agreed with them.
Bishop Wack was one of 15 bishops from Florida, Georgia, North Carolina and South Carolina who spent close to three hours with Pope Francis yesterday as part of their ad limina visits to the Vatican.
During the meeting, one bishop asked Pope Francis for three or four points he would like them to share with their people from the document “Querida Amazonia” (Beloved Amazonia), which was released the day before and offered the Pope’s reflections on the Synod of Bishops for the Amazon.
According to Atlanta Auxiliary Bishop Joel Konzen, the Pope said the most important message in the document is to care for the planet, “that this is a grave matter.”
Then, he said, the Pope told the bishops that months or even years go into producing documents and what gets reported by the media “is one line” or that “the Pope didn’t have the courage to change the rules of the Church.”
Bishop Wack said Francis told them the Synod met “‘to talk about the issues of the Church in the Amazon. Other people wanted me to talk about celibacy. They made that the issue. But that wasn’t the issue of this Synod.'”
Pope Francis also told the bishops that they and their priests must teach and preach about care for the environment.