Saturday, October 07, 2017
Rosary: against the Pope?
Today millions of Poles are going to the peripheries of their country to say the Holy Rosary, which is a wonderful way to celebrate the feast of the Holy Rosary, it is also a demonstration of the power of the Polish Church. Could our English bishops or the Germans across one of Poland's borders be able to motivate such numbers of people?
The Feast of Our Lady of the Rosary is of course 'political', it marks the destruction of Islamic forces at the Battle of Lepanto, in the same way the importance of the conversion of Languedoc through St Dominic and the Rosary was important, because of the need to have strong Christian Lords on the borders of Christendom to counter the insurgence of Islam on the Iberian peninsula.
One political strand which I find interesting are the ecclesiastical politics of this event in Poland. Though Polish bishops would deny this was an anti-immigrant demonstration, the borders with Russia and the tensions there since the rise of Russian aggression against Ukraine and its other neighbours are as much a concern as the immigrant crisis. In Poland national identity is linked to its Christian identity. The British media see this event as an indication of Poland's far rightness.
For Catholics there has to be the question, "What would Pope Francis say? " though he has backtracked on open borders, as has Mrs Merkel, it seems pretty likely he would strongly disagree with the Polish bishop's and their people's actions. Yet the Polish bishops seem often in strong disagreement with the Pope, over Amoris Laetitia and JPII's magisterium, as much as over the issue of borders.
Here, a small group of Poles and their families want to come to the Church today to join their Rosaries to that of their compatriots, one of them said it was important to him because, "The Pope was so opposed to closing borders to immigrants who do not share Polish culture". I suspect he might oppose the Pope on numerous other issues, including those mentioned in the Filial Correction.
So for him and presumably other Poles the Rosary today is in part in opposition to the Pope Francis.
Posted by Fr Ray Blake