…WHAT DOES SUCH A striking statement say about the Bush and the Church? Some, like Daniel Burke of the Washington Post, believe that Bush’s disposition towards the Pope indicates that he is likely to follow in the footsteps of another good friend, Tony Blair, and seek confirmation in the Catholic Church once his term is finished. His brother Jeb, the former Governor of Florida and a convert to Catholicism, has also modeled that path for him.
If in fact Bush is leaning towards Rome, the Pope might be inviting him to more than just a stroll around St. John’s Tower.
Weigel thinks there’s no use for such speculation. He suggests instead that their conversation will focus on their shared concern for persecuted Christians in the Middle East, especially in Iraq, which is still recovering from the murder of the Chaldean archbishop Mosul Paulos Faraj Rahho.
George Neumayr, editor of Catholic World Report and a columnist for TAS, suggests that their conversation will follow up on Benedict’s book on Europe, Without Roots, which Bush reportedly read and enjoyed.
Whatever the topic of their conversation, it is clear the President and the Pope have established a rapport that extends beyond matters of state. McGurn said that at the White House dinner for Catholic Leaders, Bush described the Church as “a rock in a raging sea.”(Source)…
I’ve seen this coming for a long time now. Bush’s speeches are thoroughly Catholic in content and substance. When I started reading some of his speeches, I said to myself “this guy is going to be Catholic one day”. And sure enough, it looks like there’s a good chance of that happening. I think a lot of that has to do with the influence of his brother, Jeb, who converted many years ago. Even his father, George H.W. Bush, had a special rapport with John Paul II. W. is said to have a real appreciation for the Church’s teachings not only on life issues but also on the ecclesiology of how the Church operates, especially with the Catholic idea of subsidiarity.
If W. “popes” in the near future, I won’t be one bit surprised.