Conservative Catholics worldwide have been throwing hissy fits over Pope Francis. After a few months in office, the unpredictable Argentinian Jesuit has declared that atheists can be good people, too; Muslim women deserve ceremonial footwashings as much as Catholic men; gay people shouldn’t be judged for their sexual orientation; and church members shouldn’t become too “obsessed” with abortion and contraception as religious issues. Whew! That’s a whole lot of compassion, humility, and other Jesus-y stuff for right-wingers to swallow in such a short time.
Just yesterday, the Vatican announced that Francis had selected Monsignor Michael Olson as the new presiding bishop of the church’s Fort Worth diocese. What can we expect from a North Texas bishop appointed by Pope Hippie McFlowerchild? Here’s a biography of Olson that conservatives would fear (and liberals would love) to read:
“Olson, a graduate of the University of California at Berkeley with a doctorate in feminist cultural studies, has authored several books on comparative religion, including the bestseller Jesus, Allah, Buddha, Vishnu: It’s All the Same, People! In his spare time, Olson likes to volunteer at women’s health clinics and LGBT resource centers. A passionate vegan who never touches alcohol, Olson owns two shelter dogs –– one named John, the other Yoko. Asked to comment on his new position as Fort Worth’s bishop, he said: ‘As a longtime fan of both Unitarian Universalism and polyamory, it is my proud duty to nudge Fort Worth Catholics toward Unitarianism and away from the traditional two-spouse marriage model.’”
Just kidding! Olson grew up in the Chicago area and until recently served as rector at an Irving seminary. I’m sure he’ll do just fine in his new post.