Pope Francis v. Tony Jones (Evangelii Gaudium)

By now, you’ve read Tony Jones’ call for schism. If you look at the new Apostolic Exhortation, you’ll see a more Christian stance:

Differences between persons and communities can sometimes prove uncomfortable, but the Holy Spirit, who is the source of that diversity, can bring forth something good from all things and turn it into an attractive means of evangelization. Diversity must always be reconciled by the help of the Holy Spirit; he alone can raise up diversity, plurality and multiplicity while at the same time bringing about unity. When we, for our part, aspire to diversity, we become self-enclosed, exclusive and divisive; similarly, whenever we attempt to create unity on the basis of our human calculations, we end up imposing a monolithic uniformity. This is not helpful for the Church’s mission.


Conflict cannot be ignored or concealed. It has to be faced. But if we remain trapped in conflict, we lose our perspective, our horizons shrink and reality itself begins to fall apart. In the midst of conflict, we lose our sense of the profound unity of reality.


When conflict arises, some people simply look at it and go their way as if nothing happened; they wash their hands of it and get on with their lives. Others embrace it in such a way that they become its prisoners; they lose their bearings, project onto institutions their own confusion and dissatisfaction and thus make unity impossible. But there is also a third way, and it is the best way to deal with conflict. It is the willingness to face conflict head on, to resolve it and to make it a link in the chain of a new process. “Blessed are the peacemakers!” (Mt 5:9).

via Evangelii Gaudium, Apostolic Exhortation of Pope Francis, 2013.

My view of women ordination is much like Tony’s I expect, but my view of Church Unity is based in John 17 with the long view.

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One Reply to “Pope Francis v. Tony Jones (Evangelii Gaudium)”

  1. I hadn’t read Tony Jones’s article until you mentioned it because I avoid Patheos, and I don’t know who Tony Jones is. But surely the “schism” he refers to is already there. Why ask for what you already have?

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