Two Articles of Interest on the Up-coming Meeting Between Pope Francis and Patriarch Kirill

Below are links to two different articles on the up-coming meeting between Pope Francis and Patriarch Kirill tomorrow in Havanna.  The first is from Crux Now, the Boston Globe site set up in conjunction with John Allen, formerly of the National Catholic Reporter.  While both articles give very interesting background material, with the Crux one a bit slanted, I have some opinions to share about them.

I have to say I find the headline of the Crux article completely misleading.  The article has some information at the beginning that was written by the “Editor”.  The Crux website lists Teresa Hannafin as editor and John Allen as associate editor.  I will go out on a limb a bit to say I think this headline is of John Allen’s making.  He has taken a recent turn to writing articles that, while not openly critical of Francis, certainly have enough innuendo and snideness to them to leave you no doubt about how he feels at times regarding the pope.  The first thing I take issue with in the headline is the word “Ukraine” seemingly indicating the person writing the article is speaking for Ukraine.  He is no representative of the country but only a scholar from a university in Canada writing an opinion piece Crux solicited him to write.  The second word in the headline I take issue with is the word “shaky”.  The headline is indicating that the person writing the article is saying that the Vatican is “shaky”.  He did not.  He stated his confidence in the Vatican was “shaky” that the pope could pull this meeting off.  The general tone of the article is that the pope and the Vatican are being dupes of Russia in meeting with Kirill.  I kind of doubt that as the Vatican has been in the diplomacy game for a long time and has dealt with some very touchy issues.  

The second article link takes you to one by Gerald O’Connell over at America.  O’Connell normally writes a tidy piece.  When I read this I noted a number of typos….not his usual style.  I got the impression he was cranking this article out in a hurry.  I noted that this article came up after the one on Crux, based on the time stamp on the America article and based on when the first comment came in to Crux…Crux doesn’t times stamp their articles.  Knowing that O’Connell is married to Isabetta Pique, who wrote one of the more prominent biographies of the pope and is good friends wit him (he baptized both of her kids), I am guessing that O’Connell is rebutting the article on Crux.  One thing I learned  in my time as a two-bit free-lance reporter doing my thing at the Vatican this past fall is that these journalists are following each other closely.  I would get to the press office early at the Vatican for the news conferences and watch these guys and gals.  Every one of them was working a laptop or tablet scanning the internet for other new pieces, checking each other out as to who was writing what.  It is part of their game.  In this day and age of instant communications, this kind of stuff is certainly interesting to see play out…..or maybe that is just my warped interest.  Anyway, this upcoming meeting in my opinion, is ground-breaking stuff and.   I think we will be seeing history in the making.   And I think PF, wily Jesuit that he is, can hold his on even against someone who was former KGB as Kirill is.  Do what PF asks us to do….pray for him……Reyanna

Crux article link:

America Magazine article link:



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