“Dominant Narrative in the Catholic Church Now is ‘Wildly Charismatic Pope Takes World by Storm’”

That’s one way that John Allen characterizes how Pope Francis has changed the conversation about the Catholic Church. Watch some of his interview from PBS last night below. [Read more...]

Must-See Video: The Pope on the Plane

From Rome Reports, highlights from the pope’s remarkable press conference en route to Rome last night. [Read more...]

Pope Francis on Gays: “Who Am I to Judge Them If They’re Seeking the Lord in Good Faith?”—UPDATED

The interview that will be making headlines around the Catholic media this morning, from John Allen in NCR: On the way to Rio de Janeiro on July 22, Pope Francis told reporters that “I don’t give interviews.” But at the end of his seven-day tour de force in Brazil, not only did the pope give an [Read More...]

“Amazing”: Serving as Lector Before Three Million at WYD

A teenager from the U.S. at World Youth Day tells all:  The young woman who proclaimed a Scripture reading at the Papal Mass at World Youth Day said that it was an unforgettable experience that enabled her to encounter the Church in a unique way. “It was amazing to look out and see more than [Read More...]

John Allen on “What We Learned About the Pope in Brazil”

He filed this for the CNN Beliefs blog: Francis was elected at 76, so he doesn’t exude the animal magnetism of the early John Paul II, the last pope to command this kind of popular affection. Elected at 58, John Paul delivered dramatic gestures like the actor he once was. For instance, he would kiss [Read More...]

Pope Francis: “We Need a Church Capable of Warming Hearts”

This is simply beautiful:  Francis was addressing the Brazilian Church but today’s lunch with the region’s cardinals and bishops in Rio’s Archbishopric was much more than this. The Pope laid out a plan for his pontificate. He presented the image of a Church which walks beside its faithful in order to be truly missionary and [Read More...]

Tradition in Action

Some traditions just have to endure… Blessed Pope John Paul II (soon to be saint) in Africa in 1980 Pope Francis in Brazil in 2013 [Read more...]

What’s the Media Saying About the Pope in Rio?

Vatican Radio’s Sean Patrick Lovett has the answer:  One thing that really stands out in headlines across the media spectrum, is how the Argentine Pope is conquering everybody – even the Brazilians (!) – with his warm and simple attitude and with the direct way he uses words… Both local Rio papers, O Globo and [Read More...]

On Pope Francis: “You Can See He is a Pastor. He is Not a King.”

Some provocative insights on Pope Francis from a provocative former Franciscan, via Vatican Insider:  “Three weeks before Bergoglio’s election, I tweeted: Francis is going to be the next Pope because as St. Francis did, the Church needs someone who can restore its lost credibility…” Leonardo Boff no longer wears a habit after his clash with [Read More...]

Pope to Argentine Pilgrims: “I Want a Mess!”

Details:  Pope Francis has shown the world his rebellious side, urging young Catholics to shake up the church and make a “mess” in their dioceses by going out into the streets to spread the faith. It’s a message he put into practice by visiting one of Rio’s most violent slums and opening the church’s World [Read More...]