Pope Francis. I like the name. I like what it represents. Time will tell. Hopeful.
In the last few weeks, I’ve been asked a few times by Catholics and non-Catholics, “Why does it matter to you who the next pope is?” The answer is simple: the Roman Catholic Church is the largest tradition within Christianity. Whoever heads the Roman Catholic Church as its Supreme Pontiff wields a tremendous amount of influence on the world stage of thought, politics, and spirituality. He shapes the face and attitude of the Roman Catholic Church as a whole. And in some ways, his leadership can influence the rest of the Christian Church, too.
That’s why today’s election of Pope Francis is an extraordinary one. The choice of Cardinal Bergoglio of Francis as his papal name is groundbreaking. No other pope has taken this name. St. Francis himself was not even an ordained priest! His life was marked with simplicity, humility, poverty, holiness, and a close relatedness to Christ and…
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