I am not a Roman Catholic. I have serious differences with the church of Rome, but then I have serious differences with the Baptist church down the street. As a Bible believing Protestant I have always viewed the Roman Catholic church as a denomination of brothers in Christ that I disagreed with but expected to see represented in Heaven. I know, that is big of me. I offer that in humility, not judgement. As that type of Protestant I have always felt that Benedict was one of the “good ones.”
I teach history. I have taught the time period identified with the Reformation. One of the points that I have always tried to get across to the kids is that the popes of that period are not representative of the Papacy. In that era you had politicians and frauds becoming Pope to use the church for their own personal aggrandizement. I think even the Catholic church would agree. I try to point out that in spite of that most popes have been men of good will, trying to be faithful to the call of God as they see it. I don’t agree with them on their theology, but that doesn’t mean they were not forces of good.
Protestants agree with the Catholic church on many basics: The divinity of Christ, the trinity, the physical death and resurrection of Christ, and believe it or not, Catholics accept Ephesians 2:8,
(Ephesians 2:8 KJV) For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:At least the serious Catholics I know agree with the statement.
We disagree on the authority of the Pope, the place of Mary, the nature of communion, and many other issues.
Let us pray that the next Pope is one of the “good ones.”
We live in interesting times. Let us hope that is not a curse.
homo unius libri