The Pope: Holy Father, Scott Hahn
The following is the transcripts of Scott Hahn’s audio and videotape presentation, “The Pope: Holy Father” as it appears in the”Catholic Adult Education on Video Program” with Scott and KimberlyHahn. Other transcripts are available for download as well. For moreinformation on this program, download (OVERVIEW.TXT) from the St.Joseph Communications file library. This program is also availablefor purchase either as a whole (20 Video tapes with study guides) orindividual programs (1 Video tape with accompanying study guide) fromthe St. Joseph Communications Marketplace. Other tapes and books areavailable as well.
Program 14 Transcripts
This program deals with one of the most misunderstood and oftenattacked aspects of the Church: the Pope. Scott shows from Scriptureand tradition how the Pope is not an authoritarian overseer but rathera spiritual father appointed by Christ to care for the Family of Godon earth.
A Closer Look at Christ’s Church: Answering Common Objections
This is the first in a series of five presentations that we aregoing to be giving on Answering Common Objections to the CatholicFaith. Now, this morning’s presentation is going to be dealing withthe Pope. I have subtitled it Holy Father because I hope that thisweek will give you a chance to integrate in your own heart a vision ofthe church that Christ has established as the Family of God. This isa theme that Vatican II really emphasized.
Many people think that Vatican II’s primary vision of the Churchas a communion was summarized in the phrase, “The People of God,” butthe Old Testament roots for that phrase, “People of God,” “am’ Yahweh”actually has as its primary meaning, “Family of God.” That term”people,” am’ literally denotes kinship, so it could be translated”kinsmen” or “Family of God,” and that’s how most Old Testamentscholars translate it. So when we look at the Pope, as we will thismorning, we are going to be looking at him, not as some tyrant, not assome authoritarian “know-it-all” and not as some magician who can justkind of concoct a new revelation to satisfy all parties, or anythinglike that. We are going to be looking at a father figure that Christhas established over the family that He has purchased with His ownblood.
Now, there are many misconceptions that people have. Theysometimes think that the teaching of the Church is that the Pope isinfallible; therefore, he can’t sin. That’s nonsense, although thepresent Pontiff goes to confession, I understand, at least once aweek. He’s got to have something to confess for it to be a validsacrament administered to him. Others think that he always says thebest thing at the right time. No, the Church has never insisted uponthe fact that the Pope will always say the best thing at the righttime. Rather, the teaching of the Church would allow for the Popeperhaps to postpone out of cowardice, a right thing. Or when he saysthe truth, when he teaches the truth, he might do so in a way thatincludes an ambiguity.
So we are responsible as Catholics to understand, not only whatthe Church teaches, but what the Church doesn’t teach to help clear upthese misconceptions. The Church teaches in a simple summary that theHoly Father, the Pope, the Bishop of Rome, as the successor to Peterand the Vicar of Christ, when he speaks as the universal teacher fromthe Chair of Peter in defining faith and morals does so with aninfallible charism or an infallible gift through the Holy Spirit sothat we can give to him the full assent of our intellect and our will,and we can hear the voice of Christ coming to us through the voice ofthe Pope when he is speaking in this capacity.