Paul VI being on track to being Beatified?Pope Paul VI has a few bright, shining moments of courage to his credit. Against the opposition of his own hand-picked commission, he upheld the Church's perennial teaching about the sinfulness of artificial contraception. At Vatican II, he intervened at the last possible second to prevent a serious compromise with doctrine. Otherwise Paul wept while the Church crumbled around him. He appointed a freemason to lead a committee of Protestants in whipping up a new Mass from scratch. Like many of his contemporaries, one area where Paul exhibited a ruthless iron fist was in suppressing outbreaks of Tradition wherever they appeared. We're supposed to believe the collapse of the institutional Church would have been even worse without Paul's radical innovations. I find it difficult to believe the implosion of the Church could possibly have been worse than it actually was. I suppose that's another thing Paul will be remembered for: he was spitting straight fire when he said that the smoke of Satan had entered the Church. It's a pity he didn't do anything about it.
There are so many conjectures about his private life, his friendships, those he allowed influence; there are so many questions which are unanswered, so many hints of scandal, of all the twentieth centuries Popes Paul VI should be left to sleep quietly in his grave, with prayers of the faithful.
Even his predecessor Pope St John XXIII dubbed him Hamlet.
Nine years after his election he wrote: "Perhaps the Lord called me to this service not because I have any aptitude for it, or so I can govern and save the Church in its present difficulties, but so I can suffer something for the Church so that it will be clear that it is the Lord, and not anyone else, who guides and saves it."
It's quite possible that Paul VI is in heaven. I hope he is. But this is not a man who should be held up for public veneration. In the mean time, Pius XII's cause languishes because the Church doesn't want to offend the sensibilities of non-believers. The crisis of the Church is a crisis of bishops indeed.
h/t: Rorate Caeli