Pope Francis Eliminates Input
Despite the great priority he gave to the Church’s child abuse problem, we know it took several years before he actually met with any victims of abuse, and that was just for PR. Similarly, his “summit” on child abuse took place without the participation of any victim or victims’ groups. Now Pope Francis has even stopped meeting with bishops on a regular basis.
Traditionally, popes met with every bishop once every five years – the so-called 'ad limina' visits. It turns out that Pope Francis stopped this practice some time ago. This radical change of policy was not announced. It just slipped out: “Australians begin 'ad limina' visits acknowledging impact of crisis.” We learn that Pope Francis no longer meets with individual bishops. There is no longer any pretense of listening to the troops on the ground. Instead, he simply lectures to groups of bishops and calls that an ‘ad limina’ visit.
Like President Trump, Pope Francis don’t need no stinkin’ input. He just goes by his gut. While Trump gets his facts from Fox News and selected alt-right sites, we don’t know what Pope Francis relies on. Perhaps he has divine revelations, but I suspect his sources are much lower. His idiosyncratic conception of reality suggests he is unlikely to implement useful changes in either the Church or the real world. Certainly, we’ve seen no sign to date.