A Little on Why I Care Who is the New Pope: A Small Hopeful Moment

I like the pope’s selection for his new name. I like that he uses public transportation and usually cooks for himself, or, at least, did until yesterday. I like his assertions of solidarity with the poor.

And, I’m a lot less sanguine about other things that are being asserted about his past and his positions on many current social issues.


Why should I care, you might ask? Why should a Unitarian Universalist parish minister and Zen Buddhist care about a Roman Catholic pontiff?

Well, Pope Francis may not command any divisions, but he is the spiritual leader of a tad more than a billion human beings (and yes, that’s a “b”), and I know his lieutenant here in Providence is busy carrying out the dictates issued from Rome, with lots of emphasis on denying civil rights to LGBT folk, blocking access to contraception wherever possible and criminalizing abortion.

It would be nice if we could find ourselves working together a bit more in those areas of agreement we have around so many issues, such as immigration and poverty.

Considering what his predecessor did to the American nuns who spent most of their time addressing these later issues, I don’t have all that much hope.

But, it is a new pope.

And, hope, though perhaps a small flame, and flickering near extinction as it may, still burns & today a little brighter with the fond thought we might recall how we all are on this small blue boat together, and what we do to one, is indeed, done to another.

Who knows?


In this moment…


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