Betty Clermont on Vatican Setting Its Sights on Asia, Questions from a Ewe on European and Male Hegemony in the Church (and Synod on Family)
Pontificates have common and particular geopolitical aspirations for increasing the power of the Catholic Church. The current pope and his two predecessors formed and maintain the U.S. episcopate as a politically motivated body who, in support of the Republican Party, remained silent on immoral military invasion, torture and domestic slaughter by firearms but went into paroxysms of outrage over birth control.
John Paul II allied with the Reagan administration against the Soviet Union in Eastern Europe and in support of military dictatorships in Latin America.* The Eurocentric Benedict XVI tried to restore some deference previously enjoyed by the Church on that continent and concentrated on Africa, which he called the “lung of the Church,” mindful of the West African oil boom. Now, with one of their mostinfluential and powerful pontiffs in history, the Vatican has undertaken a most ambitious project: incursion into Asia, the economic powerhouse and home to half the world’s population.
I recently read, "Pope Francis: Untying the Knots," a book by Paul Vallely. The book indicates Pope Francis is not a fan of people from Europe and North America having over-riding influence on the Catholic Church. He thinks most Europeans and North Americans don't have a clue about life in Africa and Latin America. Therefore they aren't credible guides.
Furthermore, he sees the church thriving to the point of busting at the seams in these same developing areas while it atrophies amongst the European and North American/European-descent crowds. Therefore he further questions the European folks as credible guides. It's sort of a "walk a mile in another person's shoes" kind of commentary in that Francis thinks the European and North American folks lack street creds to tell Africans and Latin Americans what to do.
* Citing Betty Clermont, The NeoCatholics: Implementing Christian Nationalism in America (Clarity Press, 2009), chap. 6.