01.28.2014 08:04 AM

Here’s a magazine cover I thought I’d never see


But I understand why Rolling Stone did it.  This guy – as I said to my former Boss last week, a notable progressive leader himself – is the most famous progressive leader in the world.  If he is not stopped from carrying out long, long overdue reforms, I now believe Pope Francis can change the Catholic world – and, perhaps, the greater world beyond that.

I am a regular church-going Catholic (lately, twice a week) – and I favour the ordination of women, the recognition of Catholic gay marriage, and women’s reproductive freedom.  I’ve always been in a Catholic minority (I think) because of that, but the smiling guy up above is giving me hope that may not always be the case.

Comments are welcome, as always.  But be civil, or you’ll be excommunicated from this web site.



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    PeggyW says:

    The biggest danger to him will be reforms he tries to make to the Vatican Banking system. I believe a previous Pope who attempted reforms died quite promptly.

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      Eric Weiss says:

      Godfather III was not a documentary.

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    AlanM says:

    A telling profile of Pope Francis in the Dec. 23-30 issue of The New Yorker suggests that he could very well initiate a shift in the way power is exercised in the Church. That would be radical. His response to the Church’s sexual abuse scandals, though, may fall short of expectations of victims and their loved ones. Worth reading.

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    Ridiculosity says:

    Kind eyes and a warm smile…

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    patrick says:

    Wow, an archaic fantasy joining the world of 1963. Nothing like the alleged moral bastion of the western world leading from behind and still trailing.
    (That’s about as civil as I can be on religion. There’s going to be penance, isn’t there?)

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    MississaugaPeter says:

    If Pope Francis was to 1) ordain women; 2) allow gay marriage; or 3) permit abortion, the Church would break into two.

    To assess the damage that would be caused by the three aforementioned, Pope Francis would test the effect of married priests first.

    I, too, attend mass more than once a week, but I believe you and many others have placed your hopes onto changes in the Church by Pope Francis the same way the world placed their hopes in changes in the United States when Barack Obama was elected (see Nobel Peace prize). The later never materialized to the extent we hoped and I expect the former will not for you.

    Pope Francis is emulating Jesus and St. Francis of Assisi and moving the Church toward greater acceptance of others and helping the unfortunate by standing against inequality. Unlike many popes before him, his greatest appeal is that he is an example of Jesus and St. Francis of Assisi – forgiving, accepting, loves everyone, honest, simple. But don’t expect Pope Francis to do what Jesus did not: 1. Have a woman disciple (priest) or 2. Reverse the Old Testament’s stand on homosexuality and love.

    You are correct in surmising that Liberal Catholics are a minority in the world.

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      debs says:

      except this guy doesnt have to worry about reelection, and this guy doesnt have to work with american republicans. But yeah I think that its still too early to tell if he will have a desired impact.

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    Mark says:

    Pope Francis is saying all the right things, but there seems to be little follow-up with action. (I agree with MississaugaPeter’s comparison to Obama.)

    Argentinians saw the same thing when he was a Cardinal; talking about helping the poor, but then punishing priests who actually did so.

    Personally, I think people who see Pope Francis as a progressive saviour are being taken for suckers. Which may be the point. The Catholic church may not admit it publicly, but I’m sure they’ve looked at the numbers, and realized they need to do something about their public image. What they did was to put a spin doctor at the helm.

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      MississaugaPeter says:

      I think he walks the talk more than the typical, fair-weather, spin doctor.

      I think people are wanting to hear things that he is not saying. Example: Women need to be more involved in the Church does not equate to women priests. Both Pope John Paul II and Pope Benedict paved the wave for alter girls. Something that was not considered even a few decades earlier. I expect Pope Francis will permit women deacons this decade.

      I have done quite a bit of research on Pope Francis and have never read anything that states he punished Argentinian priests who helped the poor. Accusations of being complacent during the Argentinian military regimes do however exist. They oftentimes do not consider what he and the Church did do in secret, just as the Pope and many, many Catholic clergy and laypeople did to help non-Catholics during World War II.

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    T.W. says:

    I’m agnostic when it comes to religion with no interest in faith of any sort……but I like this guy, he seems genuine.
    Perhaps he can help delver a kick to the ass of the Catholic hierarchy they so desperately need.
    But ordination of women, recognition of Catholic gay marriage, and women’s reproductive freedom?
    That seems a tall order IMHO, hopefully I’m wrong.

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    Joe O'Neill says:

    You are not a Catholic. By your own freely stated beliefs, you exclude yourself from the fold.

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