For 500 years, the Catholic Church denied communion to parishioners who divorce and remarry. But this week, Pope Francis may chart a new course, breaking ranks with his predecessor, Pope Benedict XVI, who refused to allow for pastoral discretion on the issue. James Carroll is the author of "An American Requiem: God, My Father, and the War that Came Between Us" and "Toward A New Catholic Church: The Promise of Reform." He examines the choices facing Pope Francis regarding marriage and the future of the Catholic Church.
New Yorker contributing writer James Carroll discuses Pope Francis, and whether his recent statements about gays, women, capitalism and more might indicate a new direction for the Catholic Church.