It is not because Pope Francis is moving in the desired direction that his Church, that stubborn old mule, will necessarily want to follow him!
Just because the pope wants doesn't mean the pope can.
He is the head of the Church, be it! But does the body always do what the head asks?
This is what I said to myself as I listened to the formal apologies of the courageous François on behalf of his two-thousand-year-old institution...
Certain disaffected people in the Church certainly think that this “progressive” pope is no more eternal than another and that the next one will perhaps be more to their liking!
Who can predict the outcome of the next conclave?
Is it a coincidence that the first pope to sympathize with the fate that was reserved for Native Americans by the Canadian regime instituted by John A Macdonald, and which partly used Catholic labor, is also the first Jesuit pope?
The Jesuits certainly have nothing to be ashamed of their track record in New France.
They are often the ones who immersed themselves in the indigenous cultures they discovered, and who even wrote the first dictionaries.
The Catholic Church has always been able, in the four corners of the globe, to mingle with local cultures without abolishing them.
I remember a Christmas among the Mayas where the ancient deities, including the jaguar, were represented... something unimaginable among Protestants!
Banning the Jesuits was even one of the first decisions of the British conqueror here!
If the Pope does not want his first cautious steps towards reconciliation with the First Nations to be his last, he must ensure that his policy will survive him.
In addition to opening the Vatican archives to help elucidate dark pages of history, will he have the tact to appoint a few bishops or archbishops among the priests from the First Nations?