The New York Times has an interesting article about "conservative" Catholics feeling swatted aside during this papacy.
It's worth reading not only because it features my friend and newly-minted media speed-dial guy, Steve Skojec, but also because it's a solid article.
First of all, a bit of a chuckle--Veep Steve holds that office in his wife Jamie's real estate agency, which consists of...the two of them. So, subtract the spats-and-monocle look you may be attaching to his visage. Not so by the way, Jamie knows real estate like nobody's business, and helped us navigate a problem we were having a while back. So, if you're in NoVa and need to sell or buy real estate, go her way.
I think the article is well done, showing a range of reactions, and fairly so. It misses part of the problem, though--the Pope's steady jabs at what would normally be described as "conservative" spirituality.
That's a crucial point, and one that needs to be remembered. Especially in light of the by-now tedious "older brother" accusation. Which, of course, has turned up in soundbite reactions to this article with the same frequency as yellow snow near a Malamute on Lasix.
The "older brother" retort would fit better if the parable had featured the father repeatedly needling and deriding his older son before welcoming the prodigal back. If certain Catholics have felt like redheaded stepchildren, it's because the Pope has, at times, been a bit slappy, and exclusively toward gingers. For a man with undeniable pastoral gifts, it's equally clear he has his blind spots, and I hope he grows in that respect. Right now, I'm in the position of loving the pontiff, but not really liking him. I am hoping and praying that changes.