Fr Thomas Berg writes here & below:
” In his hand written notes that formed the basis of his presentation during the General Congregations prior to the Conclave, then Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio penned the following:
“When the Church does not go out of herself to evangelize, she becomes self-referential, she grows ill (like the stooped woman in the Gospel). The evils which appear throughout history in Church institutions are rooted in this self-referentiality—a kind of theological narcissism.”
This theme—the dangers of self-referentiality—has often been the subtext of much of Francis’ teaching to date. It has flavored his preaching and contributed greatly to the public perception of Papa Bergoglio as ‘the new management’ at the Vatican, the one who has come to ‘shake things up’.
Hence, Evangelii Gaudium can very rightly be interpreted—for all else that it is—as Francis’ antidote to Catholic self-absorption.
And if we are hearing Francis, it would seem that this message is especially directed to priests and bishops, far too many who minister in the Church as joyless managers who fail to communicate Jesus Christ. I cannot help but think especially of careerist clerics turned bureaucrats who sustain a Kafkaesque labyrinth of inefficiency, priests who consider themselves members of a privileged caste, living in pursuit of power and perks, absorbed in their self-referential ecclesial existence. “