In her latest On the Square column , Elizabeth Scalia reminds us that politics is only part of Pope Benedict’s job description:
Political action is perceived as glamorous. It has about it an illusory aura of perpetual primacy; to the world, political engagement is the ultimate vehicle of utility. Benedicts predecessor, Blessed Pope John Paul II, was happy to practice political messaging both subtle and subversive; his colossal global presence helped enlarge the very definition of a governing pope. Not particularly interested in acting as a manager and Vatican overseer, John Paul steered the papacy toward the geopolitical stage, and it is clear from Allens piece that some believe a pope who lacks the interest, or the calling, toward such engagement is somehow only half on the job.