What if Steve Jobs had been an archbishop? 

My thoughts this week are neither eulogy nor a canonization of  Steve Jobs.

Rather a meditation about contemporary leadership styles.

A few days before the death of  “Mr. Apple,” New York’s Archbishop Timothy Dolan, the  “American Pope,” sent a letter to President Obama. That letter which I see as more a Dolan diatribe than an invititation to genuine dialogue, warned the President about the dire consequences of his domestic leadership, perceived by Dolan as anti-religious, anti-family, and anti-marriage……. (More about that in a future post.)



Dolan’s letter reminded me that the New York Archbishop is firm about certain Catholic “non negotiables.” Some things he has often said can never change: opposition to birth control, opposition to abortion, opposition to same-sex marriage, opposition to women priests.

Then we all learned, of course, about the death of Steve Jobs. I picked up my iPad and started reading bits and pieces of Jobs biography and testimony’s by friends and colleagues.

Then it hit me:

What if our bishops had the same kind of leadership skills as Steve Jobs?

What if they were open-minded contemporary thinkers like Mr. Jobs?

What if they could dream about tomorrow like Steve Jobs, rather than dream about yesterday like the Pope?

Then I came across this Steve Jobs quotation:

 “Here’s to the crazy ones, the misfits, the rebels, the troublemakers, the round pegs in the square holes… the ones who see things differently — they’re not fond of rules… You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify or vilify them, but the only thing you can’t do is ignore them because they change things… they push the human race forward, and while some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius, because the ones who are crazy enough to think that they can change the world, are the ones who do.”

Steven Paul Jobs (1955 – 2011)

Steve Jobs was a demanding perfectionist. He continually aspired to position his business and his products at the forefront of the information technology industry by foreseeing and setting trends. He summed up that self-concept at the end of his keynote speech at the Macworld Conference and Expo in January 2007, by quoting ice hockey legend Wayne Gretzky:

“There’s an old Wayne Gretzky quote that I love:  ‘I skate to where the puck is going to be, not where it has been.’

And we’ve always tried to do that at Apple.”  

Next time I see Tim Dolan I will encourage him to meditate on Jobs and  Gretzky — along with Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John…….

2 thoughts on “Archbishop Steven Paul Jobs

  1. All I can say is, a la Gretzky, what the puck are you thinking! Pushing forward, changing the world, seeing how things could be…crazy! Church leadership can’t be like that, Jesus was like that and look what happened to him. But … ?

  2. How can there be any dialogue when different sides don’t even speak the same language, though using the same terms?
    EG, for Jobs — the “Future” meant exciting surprises and devlopments in human activity that he worked to have inputs into…
    For the Hierarchy — the “Future” is that horrible time when “secularism = loss of their power & control over others’ actions”” will be the theme of the era & the world will be going to hell in a big hurry because the Hierarchs realize that they will be thundering in vain into the vacumn of empty pews…

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