There has been some conversation recently about some foreign prelate called something like Holerich ... I think he is possibly a nether lander ... wasn't there once a cartoon character called Brother Choleric ... I wonder if they are related ... or even, identical ...
He is portrayed as emphasising our duties of unquestioning obedience to whoever, or whatever, is currently Bishop of Rome. He obeys them, he has explained, as long as they live, but is At The Ready ... waiting for the Starting Gun ... the moment they die. For example, S JP2 took a firm line against the Ordination of Women, and PF has confirmed that stand, but as soon the poor fellow is dead, it will be Open Season for Brother to "expand" that teaching.
Obeying the present pope but dumping those in the past is, however, not a new idea. Some prelate called Scicluna had it some years ago.
"Whoever wishes to discover what Jesus wants from him, he must ask the pope, this pope, not the one who came before him, or the one before that. This present pope."
The only new element added by Br H E Choleric is that he looks boldly to the future. A sign, presumably, that he is expecting some imminent change. (In England, we have sort of feeling that it's Bad Form to speculate on "When the Queen is dead", but, as I wrote, Choleric is a Not One Of Us.)
My only contribution to this debate is to point out that, according to the First Vatican Council, such teaching is heretical. As the Council taught:
"The Holy Spirit was promised to the successors of Peter, not so that by his revelation they might publish new teaching, but so that by his assistance they might devoutly guard and faithfully expound the revelation handed down through the Apostles: the Deposit of Faith."
Pretty clear, yeah?
Perhaps our Eminent Brother Cholerich will one day feature in an Auto da Fe in the Piazza in front of S Peter's?