Pope Francis has recently apologised. He said he felt called to take responsibility for the evil done by paedophile Catholic priests.
But how does this translate in practice? Do we detect the same model the Catholic Church has been using for aeons to deal with those very same paedophile priests: admit (confess) and you are forgiven, case closed, end of.
Nominating that which is not right is just an initial stage of the entire process required to bring about well overdue change. What about the part of truly taking responsibility in action, and not in mere words.
In a recent interview with Geoffrey Roberston, QC, Human Rights Lawyer and author of the enlightening: The Case of the Pope, I asked for his take on Pope Francis' promotion of a Pope for the poor who appears to be challenging the old guard and cleaning up the Vatican. Genuine? Or brilliant political spin typifying the art of distraction and yet another PR exercise?
I am not anti Catholic, answers Robertson, and I am prepared to give Pope Francis the benefit of the doubt, however, there are certainly some doubts because he hasn't really risen to his challenge (yet).
The acid test of his Papacy will be whether he is prepared to change Cannon Law. Because he is the king, he's the law maker, he CAN end this ludicrous situation of the Church protecting its own people through its secret trials which have invariably and alarmingly fizzled out with the guilty priests saying: Hail Maries!
Pope Francis can do it, Robertson continues, a good start would be to abolish the doctrine of Papal infallibility.
• The Pope has got to put an end to this absurd pretence that the Vatican is a state.
• The Pope should stop its propaganda about homosexuals and the family planning it vetoes.
• The Pope should get out of the sex business that the Church has been so entrenched in.
• The Pope can rethink the birth control nonsense that makes the Church a laughing stock.
• And the most challenging of all, the Pope can put down a proper policy in relation to pedophilia priests.
Pope Francis might start by telling the priests that there are some unforgivable crimes that are incompatible with Christian/Catholic belief.
I was reminded by a dear friend that so much of what we witness within Catholicism is a complete counter to what Christ had brought through the human being we know as Yeshua and that was the unification of the mind and body. Catholic teachings made the body unglorified, and made us feel guilty. Sex was a 'no no', it was a sin. Women were basically born unclean, therefore always unclean, as was the man though he could redeem himself by redemption and he could at least elevate the woman. So there were all these counters to the glorification of the body being love and being a vessel of God.
On 3rd April, Pope Francis met the Queen and gave a gift for her great-grandson, Prince George. The very man the Queen received a gift from for Prince George, has the absolute power, but has as yet chosen NOT to exercise it, to change with as much as a brush stroke all the above suggested by Mr Robertson and in particular to put a proper policy in relation to Catholic paedophilia practising priests.
How's that for a True Gift fit for Prince, future King of the people - the gift of not being abused by a group that have a history of fighting, torturing and genocide in the name of asserting themselves as humanity's representatives of God on earth and our only gateway to God. Ironic, isn't it?
I asked Mr. Robertson: How different (if at all) in truth is obvious corruption (where money exchanges hands for gains) compared to getting chummy with the Pope, in the case of politicians, for the sake of an awful lot of Catholic voters?
It doesn't seem a good idea if you are politician to get the church offside. The Vatican is a useful way for politicians to pretend. The Papacy gives that aura of religiosity and 'innocence'. It is a way of spinning yourself and your party and voters. There are an awful lot of ignorant voters in any democracy who tend still to associate religious belief with honesty when the evidence is just the contrary!
The Church in many countries has affected the vote, Robertson expands. There were some examples in history where the influence of Church has been beneficial, but when it came to the crunch and the Jews were being killed outside the doors of the Vatican, those doors stayed locked and the Pope's mouth shut.
To my bewilderment I learn that the head of state who has most visited the Pope is the last person one would expect - Putin. Is he further promoting himself as a defender of Christianity by much publicised visits to the Pope?
In Australia for example, adds Robertson, you had the ludicrous position of the Ambassador to the Vatican, a totally superfluous embassy, which the Australians pay through their nose for. They send to it Catholic politicians that the party and power want to get rid of or do a favour for and in the last case the foreign minister sent his best friend who was a Catholic!
Perhaps it is time we all, Kings, Queens and Prime Ministers included, invite Pope Francis to take true, Geoffrey Robertson style action, rather than settling with (yet) another confession and another Hail Mary.Suggest a correction