TIME magazine lists Pope Francis among 100 most influential people, assigns Obama to write about him

And here’s some of what the president had to say about the pontiff: Rare is the leader who makes us want to be better people. Pope Francis is such a leader. His Holiness has moved us with his message of inclusion, especially for the poor, the marginalized and the outcast. But it has been his [Read More...]

Fr. Lombardi responds to reports on pope’s phone call to Argentinian woman

Details:  The director of the Holy See Press Office, Fr Federico Lombardi, has responded to widespread media reports about an Argentinian woman who says that Pope Francis called to tell her she could take Communion, even though her husband is divorced and they have not been married in church. News stories earlier this week ran [Read More...]

Jesuits report big jump in vocation inquiries

From CBS News:  Sean McCreight has a passion for teaching. But the 25-year-old California native is leaving that behind to pursue an even higher calling: becoming a Jesuit priest. “I think to see Pope Francis living an active religious life, that’s another aspect that’s attractive to me,” he said. “His life is so filled with [Read More...]

Words to live by

So I arrived at work to find this banner in the lobby of the Cardinal Cooke Catholic Center in New York: I especially love the quotes at the bottom, which carry a diaconal spirit: “Christ, make me become and remain the servant of your unique power, the servant of your sweet power, the servant of [Read More...]

Report: Pope phoned divorced and remarried woman to say she can receive communion—UPDATED

Details:  Pope Francis has phoned a divorced and remarried Catholic woman in Argentina to tell her that she could “safely receive Communion”,according to an extraordinary report in La Stampa. The woman’s husband, writing on Facebook, claims that the Pope – introducing himself as “Father Bergoglio” – spoke to his wife, who’d been divorced before marrying [Read More...]

Historic: Pope names Coptic priest as personal secretary

This is pretty remarkable, when you think about it, from the National Catholic Register:  Msgr. Yoannis Lahzi Gaid, a priest of the Coptic Patriarchate of Alexandria, has been made second personal secretary to Pope Francis. The position is among the Pope’s closest collaborators, and this marks the first time that an Eastern Catholic priest has [Read More...]

Deacon Francis

The must-see video from Holy Thursday. Beautiful. Once again, he teaches by doing. Are we taking notes?     [Read more...]

“I have to admit, seeing the pope go to confession was a pretty powerful thing”

That singular and historic moment—no pope had ever been seen going to confession before—may be having an impact this Lent. We offer the sacrament every day at my parish, and people report longer lines. Tonight, we’re bringing in extra priests to help handle the expected crowds after our 7:30 liturgy. A New Jersey newspaper takes [Read More...]

Our servant pope: wearing a deacon stole to wash feet

An alert reader sent these my way: snapshots from Pope Francis this afternoon. A report from Associated Press:  Pope Francis washed the feet of 12 elderly and disabled people Thursday – women and non-Catholics among them – in a pre-Easter ritual designed to show his willingness to serve others like a “slave.” Francis’ decision in [Read More...]

Whose feet will the pope wash? This year’s list includes a Muslim and an Ethiopian woman

From Vatican Radio:  For the second year in a row Pope Francis has chosen to celebrate the Mass of Our Lord’s Supper among people often pushed to the margins of society. He will once again visit the Don Gnocchi centre in Rome’s Casal del Marmo area, close to the Youth Detention Center where the Pope [Read More...]