OpinionReader Letters

Letters: The Vatican's new tone

Pope FrancisReligion and Belief

Re "Pope wants to shift focus to mercy," Sept. 20

There is much more than a change of tone in the recent statements of Pope Francis. The tone is pastoral, and the substance is one of old-fashioned charity and humility.

The Romans used to remark about Christians' love for one another. Today, we have culture wars between Catholic factions. Some are fixated on orthodoxy, and others pledge their allegiance to social justice. Some are fighting the seven deadly sins, and others are working in soup kitchens. Some love Vatican authority, and others find authentic Christianity working on the margins of society.

Francis seems to want big-tent Christianity. Anathemas, inquisitions and sniffing under bed sheets belong to the ancient past. We can do better now.

The church's purpose is to worship God and make human beings better people, not to run identity litmus tests on those who want to be part of it.

Bob Doud

Glendale

Mercy me! Francis claims that "a woman has a different makeup than a man" and therefore cannot serve the faith equally with men.

There is no logic or merit in his vague statement that validates exclusion of women from the priesthood.

When thinking of all the idiotic and reprehensible violence around the world, most of it is perpetrated by men, so perhaps the better "makeup" of a woman should exclude men from the priesthood. If Francis truly wants to "reach out to the marginalized," he can begin by incorporating women as equal members and resist referring to any creator as "he."

Religions are men-made in an effort to control others, especially women. No thanks; there are enough worldwide governments and cultures steeped in the Cinderella Syndrome trying to control me. I pass on them all.

Julie-Beth Adele

Long Beach

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