Really devoted readers may recall that, some months ago, I tentatively floated my theory that, since PF seemed to have gone a bit easier on his abuse and obscenity, perhaps somebody he respected had suggested to him that these things did his cause more harm than good. It seemed to me, in turn, appropriate to go easier on PF. Perhaps you have noticed ...
Sadly, I seem to have been wrong. PF has again attacked traditionalist Catholics, apparently considering them a phenomenon parallel to extremist Islam (when did traddies last blow up a concert audience?).
And he has reverted to calling journalists whom he dislikes "Shit-lovers" and "Shit-eaters".
Frankly, I do not believe that this is how a Roman Pontiff should address the world. Or even a junior curate his parish.
Surely, there must be senior lay Catholics ... and I am not referring only to traddies ... who find this sort of thing as distasteful or even possibly deranged as I do. Do they ever drop a tactful private word to Cardinals they know? Do concerned Cardinals ever confidentially pick the brains of trustworthy psychiatrists? Behind the scenes, is anybody trying to put together a seemly and becoming way of bringing this pontificate to a tidy conclusion?
(I drafted this piece some time ago, and have left it for my reconsideration before publishing it. I shall not enable any comments.)