This monk up in the North Woods has been laid low.  Last Thursday (7th) I had a hip replacement on my left hip.  It was about time.  Now for the recover process.  So my blogs will be much shorter.  It takes me time to think through what I want to say.  I don’t want to slow down in getting something out each week.  For any man who reads this blog, I want you to know that I am committed this work.  I did not choose this avenue of ministry.  For me it is a calling.  As long as I know there are a few men out there who benefit from this blog, I will stay motivated.

Any way, this last week I was able to take in the election of the new Catholic Pope, Pope Francis.  I considered this to have been a special time for myself, as I entered into the life of the Catholic Church.  You, men must know that I am not Catholic with some concerns and questions about doctrine. Yet I have, however, tasted deeply of the spiritual life of the Catholic spiritual tradition.  I am not one of those evangelicals who completely “writes off” the Catholic Church.  We can learn from each other.  I think in the days to come we will need each other to combat the rapid rise of ” hostile secularism.”

As some of you may recall, I believe God is calling men to “fight the good fight of faith” in new ways.  I have said that we are to wage subversive warfare with the weapon of love and humility.  The Way of Jesus is a minority path, opposed in our cultural environment.  With that in mind here are four observations I have taken away regarding Pope Francis that relates to the subversive battle we are waging.   First, the pope is a sincere follower of Jesus.  He has already said that “Jesus in head of the church.  Second, this pope is a humble man.  He lived in a small apartment and took the bus to work. Thirdly, he is also a simple man.  He took the name “Francis” for Saint Francis of Assisi.  Fourthly, Pope Francis has a heart for the poor.   This is counter-cultural and subversive.   We will be hearing a lot more about this pope in the days to come.