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. Benedict’s 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 Allen’s piece that some believe a pope who lacks the interest, or the calling, toward such engagement is somehow only half on the job.

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