Papal States

Friday, April 18, 2008


A Stateside visit by Pope Benedict XVI has occasioned fresh reporting of the sex abuse scandal, the American Church and, of course, the Popemobile. National Catholic Reporter news director Tom Roberts says that journalists perform laudably, despite the secrecy of the Church.
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Comments [5]

Chris Gray from New Haven, CT

You could not have covered it, as it coincided with your WNYC broadcast, but WNBC covered the Mass at Yankee Stadium. I tuned it in for my 92-year old mother reminding her that, while it is perhaps the last that she will attend (even in this fashion), it is appropriate that it be said for her by a Pope.

While a point was made to inform us that the broadcast was staffed by Catholics, they still could not resist a sort of play-by-play-with-color-commentary-by-clerics approach that suited the venue more than the event during the latter part of the Mass and as Benedict XVI made his exit.

I might have become annoyed but the Terrorist Surveillance folks had to get to work listening in on my nephew from Poland's call to his grandmother, right about then, so I had others at which to be annoyed.

Apr. 25 2008 12:18 AM
Bill from Chicago

As to the Pope not sitting for a typical “American” style interview, the Pope (and the Church) realize that the answers to many questions do require some thought and reflection and that “sound-bites” rarely, if ever, inform. Wouldn’t you rather have a well reasoned and comprehensive answer to a question than an off-the-cuff 10 second response?

Besides, given the mindset of some of the more popular American interviewers we would probably be subjected to questions like, “So, your Holiness, answer the question that all Americans really want the answer to - do you wear boxers or briefs?”

It seems that, rather than seeking to learn something far to many interviewers in the American media see as their sole purpose the humiliation and denigration of the one being interviewed as well as an opportunity for the interviewer to display how witty, clever and hard-hitting they are.

Do you really think that the electorate in Pennsylvania and the rest of the country were well served by the most recent “debate”?

Apr. 22 2008 11:38 AM
Bill from Chicago

I guess it's true that the eye sees what the mind wants it to see.

As did Sylvia, I too saw lots of nuns in habits, not many but some priests in cassocks (most who were identifiable a clergy in the pictures I saw wore suits or clerical shirts).

But, unlike Sylvia, I also saw tens of thousands of ordinary Catholics who attended the liturgies. Millions who saw the Pope in person or via the media and who were truly moved and inspired. It's sad that so many in the media focus only or mainly on the negative and controversial and fail to acknowledge or give proper weight to the positive.

I think it illogical and probably mean spirited to criticize the Pope for failing to shake hands with everyone of the tens of thousands who gathered at Ground Zero.

Apr. 22 2008 11:38 AM
Sylvia from New Jersey

The images of this past week have spoken very clearly to what Tom Roberts is talking about. Priests in cassocks and sisters in habits and veils tell the story that this papacy wants as the Catholic reality. Adults, men and women who have lived and worked and ministered in the world, need not apply.
I was especially taken with the fact that the men and women at Ground Zero weren't even allowed to introduce themselves to the Pope or to tell their stories. What an indignity to hoist upon people who have had their experiences. Once again a symbol of the way in which the hierarchy retains power. If they can control the words that are spoken they can shape the reality. That's why no questions about bishops' accountability were permitted. That is not the reality that the hierarchy wants to create.

Apr. 20 2008 08:32 PM
Robert from NYC

Nobody has the guts to put the questions to him on the spot. The press proved that by the way they groveled to the Church/Pope and just waited around for the gold coin with the pope's head on it. Sickening, ain't it!!
As for Cardinal Law he was REWARDED with one of the four major basilicas in Rome and so in the Church Santa Maria Maggiore. He is the Cardinal Priest in that very rich, both historically and economically, "assignment" after the sloppy and poor way he neglected to handle the pedophile priests in his archdiocese. What a disgrace.

Apr. 20 2008 10:20 AM

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