A signal of change?
by: John Tyrrell
I've criticized the leadership of the Roman Catholic Church all too often in these pages. Unfortunately, these very conservative old men have given me little opportunity to do otherwise. But perhaps, some change is coming.
On Wednesday, Cardinal Scola, archbishop of Milan spoke out on religious freedom.
"...protecting religious freedom means above all encouraging religious pluralism and opening to all forms of religious expression, for example eliminating laws that criminally punish blasphemy."
He also spoke out in favour "the values of healthy secularism" that are behind the free expression of all religious viewpoints.
In favour of secularism and against blasphemy laws... Both these are positions contrary to those of Pope Benedict XVI. For Scola to have spoken out this way indicates either that he has Pope Francis' implicit support, or that cardinals and bishops are now going to be freer to speak their own minds than they were under Benedict.
Either way it is a potential signal of change, and change for the better.