After John Paul, the conclave served us up Benedict. In spite of what the church hierarchy presents, he was not very popular. For the first time, in this media savvy world, just how political the selection process was, where coalitions formed around specific candidates. In the end a guy named Ratzinger won the papacy. Immediately the rocks began appearing. There were vague links between he and the Nazi party. Even today, do a search on the Internet and you're going to find all kinds of links to websites which call him the Nazi Pope.
|They eyes look a bit shady, don't they?
Then there were his strident views on doctrine, unflinching, unable to bend even slightly in the wind of an ever changing world. For every one step forward John Paul had taken the church, he took it two steps back. I suppose, had he been pope back when mass was still said in Latin, he might not have been so bad. It wouldn't surprise me if his retirement, the first in 600 years or so, was not politically motivated. There was the incident with "What the Butler Knew." For the first time ever the doormat had been lifted and people began to see all the dirt hidden there.
We will have to wait and see if the Catholic Church has learned its lesson, or if they're going to dummy themselves up and take another couple of steps backwards.