The naked Pope¶
In November 2021, after two months of listening for the Synod, I had the following vision:
Pope Francis will do yet another important step during his lifetime. He will delegate the leadership of the Roman Catholic church to another person and then found the Synodal Church, a new institution that will embrace and unite all Christian institutions under his leadership.
Most institutional property will remain with the Roman Catholic church, he will take with him only what an institution needs to survive. I guess that this will be the Secretariat of the Synod of Bishops, parts of the Holy See and a few other administrations, maybe a few real estate objects. Like his patron St. Francis of Assisi when he left his parents, Pope Francis will be “naked” during a short moment.
This step is is not a schism. In the contrary, it is the only way to avoid another schism and to reconcile the Church. It is a step towards greater unity. No single faithful will get lost and no single faithful will be forced to change more than they are able to change.
The other parts of the Roman Catholic church will follow little by little, each at their pace and when their pastor decides so. They will do this more or less carefully, more or less quickly, each of them as it is due. They will discover their place under the new institution.
At the same time other religious institutions, protestant and orthodox, will do the same and unite in joy with the Synodal Church. Also many of the faithful who left the visible Church during the last years will return. And even a series of corporations that have not called themself “Christian” until now, will join this choir and align into the Synodal Church.
The Roman Catholic church will simply no longer be the “top of the tree”, it will find itself at the same level together with protestant and orthodox Christians.
There will be resistance because humans are naturally resistant to change. This resistance itself is rather a confirmation than an obstacle.
This vision is based on a real-life story and inspired by the hope to “plant dreams, draw forth prophecies and visions, allow hope to flourish, inspire trust, bind up wounds, weave together relationships, awaken a dawn of hope, learn from one another and create a bright resourcefulness that will enlighten minds, warm hearts, give strength to our hands.” (PD no 32).
In daily life I work as a professional software developer. The issues I worked upon during the last 30 years with my customers are of the same nature as the issues I see in the Church. If the Church were a software application and I the developer and the Vatican my customer, then this is what I would suggest them to do.
The time indication (“Pope Francis” and “during his lifetime”) is not absolute. It rather says that this step is the only possible path. Any endeavour that is not into this direction is a waste of time.
This is a vision, not a prophecy. It won’t happen like this. Most Catholics would go with the Pope, so he wouldn’t be “naked” at all.