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David Gibson: Francis Re-Orients the Catholic Church

Monday, April 14, 2014

Pope Francis waves from the Popemobile on his way to attend the Via Crucis on Copacabana Beach during World Youth Day celebrations on July 26, 2013 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. (Buda Mendes/Getty)

"Is the Pope Catholic?"

No doubt you've heard this sarcastic, obvious question. But one year into his papacy, some of Pope Francis' actions and statements have had liberals and conservatives alike wondering, because he's so shifted the Roman Church's emphasis and tone.

In this interview, David Gibson, a Brooklyn-based reporter for Religion News Service and biographer of Pope Emeritus Benedict the XVI, says everyone's getting it a little bit wrong when it comes to Pope Francis.

"He's trying to re-orient the entire discussion about Catholicism, and in doing so, re-orient the church," Gibson explains. "It's not doctrine first...it's about the Gospel, it's about Jesus Christ, it's about how we treat each other, it's about mercy, it's about all these things that then lead, perhaps, to doctrinal formulations."

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David Gibson

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Comments [1]

Jose from Queens

I know that you don't mean it literally but to ask whether the Pope is Catholic is a ridiculous notion. How would a non-Catholic ever weasel his way into the papacy?

If you are familiar with the Jesuits you will know that they are amongst the most radical orders of the Catholic church. The first Buddhist retreat I ever attended was hosted by a Jesuit monastery. They were at the forefront of Latin American peasant movements. I don't know why this is such a shock. the whole loose cannon narrative really denies the Jesuits of their tradition and record.

Apr. 14 2014 05:47 PM

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