The Anchoress on Benedict XVI

There is only one Truth, and Benedict XVI serves Him:

As Benedict XVI lands in the United States we can look back upon … dire predictions and report that — thus far, anyway — Benedict has not thrown his head back to bare his fangs. No iron maidens have been commissioned for the new inquisition. He has poured no kerosene on the teeming bonfires of American culture. The soft-spoken, multilingual, piano-playing book-lover who turns 81 while here has proved himself to be a peaceable and pastoral shepherd, one who likes to talk and to listen, but to do both while resolutely teaching the faith throughout the age, rather than spreading the age throughout the faith.

Pope Benedict’s encyclicals have been Christ-centered exhortations to love and to hope. There has been no bull whip cracking down, only a gentle issuing of an invitation to ponder the Eternal and to fit ourselves into the plan God has for each of us in our spheres.

In the current age, which would prefer God to fit into its plans rather than the reverse, Benedict is preaching a radical message that he knows many — blessed with free will and beholden to the age — will reject. Far from displaying an “enforcer” mentality, the pope accepts that rejection with pragmatism and ultimately with trust. “The Church,” he said as Joseph Ratzinger, “will become small, and will to a great extent have to start over again. But after a time of testing, an internalized and simplified Church will radiate great power and influence; for the population of an entirely planned and controlled world are going to be inexpressibly lonely … and they will then discover the little community of believers as something quite new. As a hope that is there for them, as the answer they have secretly always been asking for.”

The rock may be submerged by the wave, but it remains a rock all the same – and when the nauseating wave of lies and cruelty subsides, the rock will be found right where it was all along…and the people who chased after the false gods of consumerism, pornography, power and nihilism will turn – those who survive the catastrophe they are creating – humbly and child-like back to the ancient faith.

A young friend of mine once asked what sort of world we’d have if even for just a week, we all lived as Christ commanded – the world would be changed, overnight, by the most profound and genuine revolution. Meanwhile, however, we can only do what we can, taking the cares of each day as it comes, and trusting in God that as long as we try to do the right thing, then all that happens – good and bad – is for our ultimate benefit. In Benedict XVI the Church has an excellent servant – and the world a man who calls them to Truth.