Stop the Presses: Andrew Sullivan Praises the Pope!

You may want to sit down for this:  I’ve just watched the actual video of Pope Francis’ airplane press conference, and it’s even more remarkable than the quotes we gleaned earlier from reporters like John Allen. What’s so striking to me is not what he said, but how he said it: the gentleness, the humor, the transparency. I find [Read More...]

“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...]

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...]

For World Youth Day, Pope Francis Will Visit Where his Pontificate Really Began

A fascinating insight, via Vatican Insider:  The Church needs to “rid itself from all expired structures that do not favour the transmission of the faith.” This is what point 365 in the concluding document of the last general assembly of Latin American bishops at Aparecida, Brazil’s most important Marian shrine. The meeting set in stone [Read More...]

A REALLY Great Moment in Journalism: NBC Reporter Anne Thompson Chats with Pope, Asks Him to Bless Medal

If memory serves, Anne Thompson also did the readings at one of the pope’s daily Masses shortly after his election. Now, she unabashedly pops up on national television receiving a papal blessing. Some women who appear on NBC channels wear tampon earrings. Some wear holy medals. Go figure. From the NBC Nightly News: Visit [Read More...]

Singing Priests, Weeping Faithful: The Charismatic Church of Brazil

Here’s a glimpse at part of the Catholic Church that will be welcoming the pope this week, from CNN: It looks like an airport hangar and it sounds like a rock concert. Thousands have packed into a megachurch on the periphery of Sao Paulo for one of Father Marcelo Rossi’s Thursday night masses. The Roman [Read More...]

Pope Used 20-Year-Old Fiat for Lampedusa Visit

Is this a sign of things to come? From the Los Angeles Times:  Pope Francis is on the Mediterranean island of Lampedusa, where instead of tooling around in the popemobile, he’s making his rounds in a borrowed 20-year-old Fiat Campagnola. He also has let it be known how he feels about priests and nuns who [Read More...]

Buenos Aires Erects Statue of Pope; Francis Orders It Removed

Attractive, isn’t it? Details:  A life-size sculpture of Pope Francis was installed yesterday on a patio outside Buenos Aires’ cathedral, where Jorge Bergoglio presided over daily Masses before he became pope in March. The sculpture, made of fiberglass and resin, is in a courtyard closed to the public, but can be glimpsed from the street, [Read More...]

Pope Francis: “Dialogue Doesn’t Distance Us from Truth”

From today:  “Your presence is the sign of the profound bond that unites the Church of Constantinople with the Church of Rome in faith, in hope, and in charity,” Pope Francis said this morning on receiving the delegation of the Ecumenical Patriarch, which had arrived in Rome to celebrate the Solemnity of Sts. Peter and [Read More...]

Pope Francis: “Due to Our Common Roots, a Christian Cannot Be Anti-Semitic!”

Details:  Pope Francis says due to “our common roots” with the Jewish people, “a Christian cannot be anti-Semitic!” The Pope was speaking to a 30 strong delegation from the International Jewish Committee on Interreligious Consultations (IJCIC) who gathered in the Apostolic Palace’s Hall of the Popes for a private audience Monday. The IJCIC is committed [Read More...]