"Is the pope Catholic?" goes the quip that people usually use in order to confirm the truth of something they have just said. But with a series of recent pronouncements and decisions bucking papal tradition, Pope Francis has many Catholics wondering if the Catholic Church will survive his young papacy, according to the WND (World Net Daily) website.
In recent days, the media have seized on a remark that appeared to suggest that non-believers -- not just non-Catholics, but even atheists -- can gain salvation and be admitted into heaven, while his new appointment to be secretary of state, the second most important position in the Vatican, has suggested the Vatican is ready to rethink celibacy and the clergy, suggesting priests and nuns might be allowed to get married in the near future.
Pope Francis has conveyed other shocking beliefs to traditional Catholic thinking in his young papacy of six months. For example, he responded with these words to a reporter's question regarding homosexuality in the Catholic Church: "If someone is gay and he searches for the Lord and has good will, who am I to judge?"
Whether or not a plethora of Catholics will soon leave the Catholic Church -- as a result of Pope Francis' frequent and unprecedented opposition of traditional Catholic beliefs -- remains to be seen.