A recent AP article that appeared all over the country takes another angle of desperation. This one claims that the problem with the Pope is that he is too academic and does not have enough pastoral experience to properly handle the abuse claims that reached his desk. Below is the beginning of the article:
This is what now passes for journalistic objectivity. Wild claims, such as:
One thing absent from his resume? Significant time as a parish priest.
Joseph Ratzinger, the future pope, only worked 15 months tending to a flock in the 59 years since taking his vows, instead closing himself in the ivory tower of academia - a background that may help account for his troubled handling of the sex abuse crisis engulfing the church.
For one, it adds to the impression of an out-of-touch pontiff who simply doesn't grasp the enormity of the fury around the world over mounting evidence of sex abuse by priests, and inaction on the part of the Vatican and Benedict himself.
Benedict's very legacy will be shaped by whether this aging pontiff, who turns 83 on Friday, can embrace a new openness and express remorse in straightforward language free of the stilted defensiveness of many Vatican pronouncements to date.