Red Shoes Eschewed
By Dr. Peter Jones
It is certainly good to read that the new pope Francis I is refusing many of the signs of papal opulence, including Benedict’s red shoes, and that he is calling for increased concern for the poor. But why do Popes and English Archbishops, (the latest was installed with equal pomp and ceremony yesterday at Canterbury Cathedral) who claim that their authority derives directly from the original apostles, have so much trouble integrating the apostolic book of Romans and its theme of Creation, Fall and Redemption into their vision for the Church’s future? In contrast to the Medieval Church, Luther saw the transformative power of this truth, that “the just shall live by faith,” and the world was deeply changed forever. The Gospel is not about what we do for the poor, good though that might be. It is about what God has already done about the poverty of the human fallen condition. In spite of all the pageantry, or lack of it, (no red shoes), without the preaching of Creation, Fall and Redemption, there is no long-term future hope for the planet.