For the first time in 2,000 years, the Roman Catholic Church has a pope born in the New World.

He’s doing things differently too. Francis, the Jesuit, opts for less opulence when it comes to the pomp that surrounds the pontiff. His muted demeanor is a symbol for what the church should be doing right now, operating with a little humility. After several years of the pedophile priest scandals, it’s time to make amends and show the flock that their leadership is worthy.

And yet, a month into his new vocation, some aren’t happy with Francis because he’s not kissing the asses of particular factions which Benedict courted.

I was born and raised a Catholic and I had always been proud of my religious heritage. This is mostly because I was brought up in an area with a lot of heavy evangelical influence. Since the pedophile accusations and allegations of the coverup came to the surface, I don’t find myself kneeling in the church very often. I sure as hell haven’t been to confession.

I’m angry at the upper echelon of Catholic management because instead of trying to hide the pederasts and their scandals, they should have hung them out to dry and turned them into the police.

Why didn’t they do that? My theory is money. They knew once it got out that they had a problem, there would be lawsuits, losses and settlements. They didn’t care about having predators preying on the flock, they were concerned most with their finances.

That is obscene. If this is a religion and espouses beliefs and rituals done in the name of a God, then how could they live with themselves knowing children are being victimized?

I’m also angry with fellow Catholics for their passiveness in dealing with the problem. If they really wanted to stop the problem, they should have hit the church where it counts the most— the pocketbook. One Sunday without tithes from every Catholic in this world and Rome would have had a course correction in their legal strategy.

Pope John Paul II (on the path to sainthood) and Pope Benedict dealt poorly with this and willfully ignored sidestepped the problem. Now there’s a new man in a white cap. There’s a lot of hope that he can solve these problems.

But what are people concerned with now? He washed two women’s feet at a recent ceremony and that angered traditionalists.

So we’re more concerned about a pope washing women’s feet and not priests fondling children?

I’m so relieved we have our priorities straight.

Godspeed Frank.

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