Anyone who doubts that Pope Francis is dividing the faithful (The world on the other hand seems united in loving him.) should note a fracas at First Things.
Yesterday, Maureen Mullarkey posted on her blog there a piece on Pope Francis’ U. S. tour, and it pulled few punches. The editor of First Things, R. R. Reno, in turn not only pulled the piece but evicted her blog before sundown.
His announcement and explanation of the move may be found here. This complaint of his stood out to me:
[Mullarkey] consistently treats him as an ideological propagandist, accusing him of reducing the faith to secular political categories.
Hmm. Did not Reno follow the Pope’s trip? Francis is “an ideological propagandist” who at least comes close to making Leftist politics matters of faith, particularly when it comes to “climate change” and immigration.* One can disagree with that perception, but to banish it is what the Left does.
The piece that prompted the banishment may be found over at OnePeterFive, Mullarkey’s new blog home. And, as I said, it pulls few punches. I can understand (though I might still disagree) if First Things would prefer to cease hosting her for reasons of tone. She does not sound like a First Things contributor. But then neither do I on most days. And I like some "tirades" with my ale myself.
But the manner in which Reno banished her and his explanation for so doing concern this long time First Things subscriber. If one must be polite and reserved and all that at First Things in calling out church leaders who hijack the faith to push Leftist politics, then perhaps it is time my support comes to an end.
I have not decided. I will exercise more restraint than R. R. Reno has. But I will be watching First Things more closely henceforth.
*As I write this, word just came that the Vatican has confirmed that Pope Francis met with Kim Davis and encouraged her. And I have to be fair and give a tip of the hat to that.