A Divine Plan in Pope Francis?

Regarding the hard-core leftism of the current pope, it’s disturbing, but grin and bear it. There may be a divine plan in all of this: use this pope to cozy up to the billions of people on the left in the hope that at least some of them will consider embracing Christianity. And then once they’re in, have the next pope teach them deeper lessons in Christianity.

Still, the jury is still out as to whether the “Francis effect” is bringing more people into the Church. A survey in late 2013 showed no clear Francis effect in the U.S. Another survey at that time pointed to an increase in Catholic congregations in Italy.  Those surveys are ancient history now. As far as approval ratings (as opposed to conversions to Catholicism), in the wake of the Pope’s global warming and anti-free-market activism, a recent survey showed declining approval ratings among U.S. conservatives, which is no surprise. What is very surprising is that the same poll showed a decline in approval ratings among U.S. liberals. That doesn’t make sense; more research behind those numbers is needed.

In any case, don’t fret too much over Pope Francis. By reaching out to those on the left in such a forceful manner, he may actually be helping to bring many lost sheep into the Catholic fold. And one day they may in turn end up softening or abandoning their hardcore leftist attitudes.

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