The spiritual realm that popes and prelates and preachers and plain people of one kind and another address -- when allowed the freedom to do so by the secular media -- is of a different character. Within it, by report, lie the ultimate destinies of human beings, whatever their race or sex.
Sex, for instance, contrary to what modern culture maintains, isn't a problem to be adjusted through legislation, regulation, court cases and so on. In religious terms -- the terms in which popes commonly traffic -- sex is an element of the human condition: sometimes abused in practice, nevertheless a reality of a keenly spiritual sort, with responsibility for practice and action owed to the God who reportedly launched the whole male-female enterprise.
The papacy's worldly critics make an irrefutable case against carelessness in sex -- as exemplified by the abuse of children at the hands of ordained men. Yet which is likelier to make a difference, defrockings and lawsuits or moral and spiritual reform based on careful explanation of the divinely based relationship between the members of both sexes?
"Divinely based" may or may not cut the mustard in a place and time seemingly self-liberated from obligations outside the purely human sphere. Thus the purely human practice of portraying popes as purely human CEOs to be credentialed and judged on their purely human traits and abilities.
Oh well, the Pope Watch ends in just weeks. Maybe then the Lord can pick up the slack.