Sunday, July 25, 2021

The Strawman Dialogues: The Pope is Dead, Long Live the Pope!

Trad Y: Welcome back from your social media break. Did you hear the news about the Pope F?

V2 Conservative X: Right as I come back? What a way to return after isolation...

Y: No, it's pretty big news you missed while you were gone. He...

X: Look, I know what you're going to say.

Y: What?

X: The same thing you always do. The Pope did something you interpret as heretical, or even malicious, and my response is always the same. The Pope is not for us to judge! He is our monarch. He is here to lead us, not be judged by us.

Y: Right, but...

X: No, no buts! I don't care what he did. But I do know that whatever he did, it is obligatory on our parts to give him the benefit of the doubt. To assume that he acts with our salvation in mind. That he is motivated not only by love, but by the Holy Spirit working through him. And we are lucky to be ministered to by so great and holy a man.

Y: ... Okay, before I tell you the news, I have to ask. What about the popes of the past?

X: With the benefit of hindsight we may discern some failures on the part of past popes, but even there, we do so with the leadership and vision of whoever the Pope is now. He, not we, determines the glory or heresy of those Popes. We are laity. And we are called to loving Christian obedience to the Pope, even Pope F, and..

Y: And he's dead.

X: ...What?

Y: Yeah. Choked on a biscuit about a day after you went into isolation.

X: That's...

Y: Pope Z is pope now.

X: Z??? But he...

Y: Hates Pope F. Hated, anyway. Actually based on his recent interviews he still hates him I guess.

X: ...

Y: I guess this is hard news to take in? You really loved Pope F.

X: Loved? That old heretic? I'm glad he finally took a dirt nap. Thank God we have Pope Z to show us how wrong we were.

Y: Huh.

X: What? 

Y: Just marveling how your definition of loving Christian obedience seems an awful lot like sucking up to whoever's in charge at the time.

X: You know, that kind of attitude is why I get invited to the Alfred E Smith memorial banquet and your priests can't even use parish churches.

Y: Indeed.

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