The Pope’s back-flip on the question of Turkey’s admission to the EU will be disappointing to his many admirers, among whom I number myself.
It looks very much like a case of a man who was strong in his views while more-or-less behind the scenes but who has now allowed himself to be weakened by the limelight, and it’s doubly sad because it’s unlikely to make him many friends among Turkey’s Muslims.
The divide between Christianity and Islam is absolutely unbridgeable, whereas the divide between Catholicism and Orthodoxy is at least conceivably bridgeable, and what an achievement it would be if this Pope could bring about an end to that thousand-year-old, greatest-ever schism. That would make him one of the two or three greatest popes ever.
Glen Iris, Vic.