John Zmirak’s 2018 Wish List

My 2018 Wish List

[H/T Here’s Zmirak’s wish for Pope Francis]

Pope Francis Repents or Else Resigns

Pope Francis has done more to divide Catholics than any pope in 150 years. He has clouded the Church’s teaching on marriage and sexuality. Francis has thrown out the clear, recent teaching of two of his immediate predecessors — which echoed Church practice and preaching for 2000 years. He has politicized the papacy, using its bully pulpit to further crudely crafted left-wing talking points on everything from the economy to immigration to climate science. He has marginalized and punished his critics, to the point that a new book calls him the “Dictator Pope.” Now he’s defending his handpicked lieutenant, Cardinal Oscar Rodriguez Maradiaga. That Honduran leftist (and anti-Semite) is accused of massive corruption that benefited him personally, to the tune of $40,000 per month. Other favorites of Pope Francis include the disgraced Belgian Cardinal Wilfrid Daneels — who was caught on tape trying to silence a sex abuse victim — and LGBT advocate Fr. James Martin, SJ.

In the best case scenario, Pope Francis will see the error of his ways, and spend the rest of his pontificate undoing the damage he’s wrought. Failing that, he should imitate the example of Pope Benedict XVI and admit that he can no longer lead the Church. He should resign, and open a political institute based in Buenos Aires. Something tells me George Soros would fund it.

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2 comments on “John Zmirak’s 2018 Wish List

  1. [A Liberal Liturgist’s] Predictions for the Catholic Church in 2018

    December 31, 2017 Anthony Ruff, SOB

    1. Pope Francis will not resign in 2018 – whether or not Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI lives through the entire year.

    2. If Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI does pass away in 2018, media coverage of his life and ministry will be largely positive. He will be seen as a tragic figure who perhaps was not suited for papal leadership, but the tone will be more sympathetic than judgmental. He will be seen as a man of integrity and a towering intellect whose theological writings will endure, even as their application requires the pastoral touch of a Pope Francis.

    3. Pope Francis will add 6 voting cardinals to the college, and perhaps one or two non-voting cardinals over 80, on June 29, 2018. Six cardinals age out in the coming year by turning 80, the last of them by June 8, 2018. The Solemnity of the Peter and Paul on June 29 would be a natural date for Francis to create 6 more cardinal electors. In doing so, he will have appointed 54 out of 120 electors. Less likely but not to be ruled out: Francis will increase the total number of cardinal electors so that he can appoint a few dozen more of his own men.

    4. Amoris Laetitia will fade as a hot news item in 2018 as the interpretation of Pope Francis establishes itself – namely, that in some circumstances it is possible for divorced and remarried Catholics to receive Holy Communion. Heated controversy will focus instead on married clergy (see #8 below).

    5. Liturgically, the “Reform of the Reform” will be further weakened– especially where ROTR means principled rejection of the post-conciliar liturgy and reestablishment of the preconciliar liturgy as much as possible. Communities which celebrate the pre-Vatican II rite may well increase and grow in some places, but the predominant narrative will solidify that the reformed liturgy of Paul VI is the norm for the Latin-rite Catholic Church.

    6. Some ROTR partisans will harden in their views and perhaps even consider aligning with SSPX, but more of them will realize that their best future lies with a more worthy celebration of the reformed liturgy and shift their movement goals accordingly. They will have plenty of upcoming younger clergy to work with.

    2. While 2018 will see no revision of the 2011 Roman Missal, the groundwork will be laid for an eventual solution, which would probably land somewhere between the proposed 1998 Sacramentary [which the Holy See rejected, because it “pushed the envelope” on inclusive language, deconstructivist translation, and liturgical innovation under the guide of translation – see ] and the 2008 text the bishops sent to Rome for approval but didn’t get back. The translation wars will die down as the promising narrative emerges that it is possible to have translations which are faithful to the original, sound right in the receptor language, and are suitable for the prayerful participation of the people.

    7. A pathway will open up for the ordination of married men under some sort of special provision alongside celibate clergy. This will develop either in conjunction with the October, 2018 synod on Young People, the Faith, and Vocational Discernment, or via remote preparations for the Amazon synod to take place in October, 2019.

    8. Ordination of women deacons will not move forward, to the great disappointment of some. Some will accuse Pope Francis of having put forth this possibility for merely political reasons, so that his goal of married priests would appear to be a compromise – approve one reform, reject another.

    9. Reform of the Roman curia will continue to languish. There will be the occasional scandal around the departure of this or that official – something which anti-Francis factions will play up for all its worth, but most people will largely ignore. Less likely, though it would be desirable: Francis will use these never-ending scandals as the pretext for closing the Vatican bank for good. (If he attempts this, he better make sure he has a food taster.)

    10. I’m least sure about this one, but here we go: Cardinal Sarah will remain as prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship. Sarah will not issue the kind of ROTR statements that get him swatted down by the pope.

    11. Mass attendance will continue to decline in the West, especially among young people. But media will increasingly notice that many young people are deeply interested in spiritual questions and not as reflexively opposed to organized religion as they were a decade or so ago.

  2. Fr. Z’s Predictions for 2018

    1. Pres. Trump will acknowledge North Korea a nuclear state to diffuse the military option.
    2. The building of The Wall will begin.
    3. Justice Kennedy will resign from the Supreme Court, and Pres. Trump will get another pick.
    4. Pope Francis – still Pope – will beatify Pierre Teilhard de Chardin with the intention to canonize him and declare him Doctor of the Church.
    5. The Synod on Youth will discuss “viri probati”, which will be approved as a step to making clerical celibacy optional.
    6. The Holy See and Palestine will establish full diplomatic relations, Nunciature in Bethlehem.
    7. The number of places with Holy Mass ad orientem will grow quietly but significantly.
    8. Card. Sarah will be transferred to Propaganda and Archbp. Roche will takeover at CDW.
    9. Doctrinal evaluation of professors and theological writings will be devolved to local episcopal conferences.
    10. Fr. Z will still not be a Monsignor.

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