Cardinal Dolan Praises Pope Francis' Change in Tone

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Archbishop of New York, Cardinal Timothy Dolan Archbishop of New York, Cardinal Timothy Dolan (Stephen Nessen/WNYC)

Catholics celebrating Mass Sunday at St. Patrick's Cathedral had a chance to reflect on comments made this week by Pope Francis that the church has become too focused on "small-minded rules" on hot-button issues like homosexuality, abortion and contraceptives.

The Pope said it was driving people away from the Church.

Speaking to reporters after Mass, New York's Archbishop, Cardinal Timothy Dolan, emphasized that the Pope's change in tone doesn't signal a change in doctrine.

Dolan, the head of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, said the Pope's words are welcome, and now the Church needs to think of more effective ways to deliver its message.

"If the church comes off as a scold, it's counter-productive," he said. "If the church comes off as a loving, inviting, embracing mother, who periodically has to correct her children, but who first and foremost loves and embraces them, then we're going to be effective."

Cardinal Dolan said that in the six months since Pope Francis assumed the papacy, "He's captured the world's imagination."

"Like Jesus, he's always saying, hate the sin, love the sinner. Truth and love have always got to be balanced, and I think he's doing that brilliantly."

With the Associated Press


Julianne Welby


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Comments [3]

Charles J Murphy

Good ol' archbishop Dolan has a picture of the previous pope hanging on the wall behind him. Plus, I don't need him to interpret what the current pope is saying. +Dolan is not my intercessor, mediator or go-between. Who know's what his real agenda is? The wind's blowing in a new direction and +Timo has his kite nicely adjusted to benefit from it, after all, he could still be the successor of Pope Francis.

Oct. 05 2013 05:02 PM
Verna from East Brunswick, NJ

The church is not a mother. The head of the church is Christ Himself and those who have confessed him as Lord and Savior, therefore obeying His commands, are his body, the church. A person can only confess Him Lord by the power of the indwelling Holy Spirit. If the Holy Spirit does not indwell you are not His. The question, therefore, is how can one become indwelt by the Holy Spirit.

Sep. 23 2013 03:21 PM
MTM from Brooklyn

In a somewhat insubordinate tone, our Parish Priest said that unlike what Pope Francesco had said, he had not been obsessed with talking about abortion, homosexuals nor contraceptives, and that "today" he was going to restate the Church's position on these topics... which he did. Then, he proceeded to talk about Sunday's gospel reading to resolve Jesus's "You cannot serve God and mammon" (money) (Luke 16:13)to mean that everything belongs to God, including your possessions, and that as Christians we are called to share it with the poor and the Church, and to please pick up envelopes for our regular contribution to the parish, and to participate in the raffle.

I will pray for our Parish Priest, and continue to love him. I am thankful for Pope Francis!

Sep. 23 2013 11:52 AM

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