Pope Francis if he would stop, think, look around him and ponder what is happening to the Church and the world, might take notice of something that is slowly but surely gaining ground in post-Communist Russia. Russia is a nation still suffering from problems, and a recent century-long occupation by an alien thing known as Communism, but the signs of its healing are unmistakable to anyone who will look at the situation with brutal honesty.
The West, the post-Catholic West, is crumbling morally, religiously and civilizationally while post-Communist Russia is rediscovering its Christian past. The leaders of the West, the anti-Christian Western powers exemplified by the United States, Britain, France, Germany, and its hangers-on, have declared "spiritual war" on Russia, and as the days and months continue so does the animus towards this resurging Christian nation intensify.
The Russian Orthodox has its problems, to be sure. The Caesaro-papism of their outlook is preventing to a large extent its reunion with Peter's Chair. We Catholics know that reunion will happen in God's good time, but sensible people cannot see any hope for a reunion until first the Catholic Church finally does what Russia and its Orthodox Church has done, namely: return to its roots. Writer Frank Gashumba notes:
For the modern outsider, Orthodoxy may appear a confronting relic of the past: a highly ritualistic liturgy suggesting an imprisonment to empty tradition; a disturbing refusal to embrace such modern imperatives as gender-neutrality, the men obstreperously growing their beards long with the women underfoot meekly covering their heads; no guitars, rock ‘n’ roll or a general concern to become relevant and get with the program. In a word, an insouciant disregard for the importunate demands of the world.
There is the stone wall presented to us in all its clarity. The leaders in the Vatican are doing precisely what the Russian Orthodox are not, Rome wants to get warm with the world, Orthodoxy in Russia does not. Rome has embraced the world which is why Pope Francis is so admired by the world; it is also why the world hates Russia and its re-emerging Christianity and wants to destroy her by any means possible, including using Syria as a catalyst to start a world war to destroy the Russian nation. All wars are religious, and so is this one.
Unlike Orthodoxy Rome does not want to be seen as "a relic of the past", and so has since the swinging sixties destroyed the beauty and holiness of the Mass, ignored centuries-old expressions of piety, abandoned beauty in music, art, literature and architecture and has, well, totally embraced the world. And we have a Pope who is seemingly just fine with all this chaos.
If Pope Francis would study seriously what is slowly growing in Russia and act on it as the Vicar of Christ he is supposed to be he might yet save Europe and the Faith. If he wont, may God grant us mercy by removing him and replacing him with a man who will be hated the world.