Meet Pope Francis
One of the accomplishments of the American constitution is the allowance it creates for religious freedom. Anyone can notice proof of that provision by the numerous church steeples that dot this land, from San Francisco to D.C. It’s a remarkable thing to see differing faiths thriving peaceably in the same place when one considers the religious tensions present in many other parts of the world.
Considering that the American people collectively represent a variety of church groups, we foster respect among other ways of checking out the world by becoming familiar with what other people believe. As we get to know each other, we break down boundaries and cultivate friendship in its place. Today, Christianity remains the dominating religious view in the United States, with the biggest portion of that group belonging to the Roman Catholic Church. Speaking to this idea of respect, Pope Francis, the church’s leader, pointed out:
” Dialogue is born from an attitude of respect for the other person, from a conviction that the other person has something good to say. In order to dialogue, it is necessary to know how to lower the defenses, open the doors of the house, and offer human warmth.”
Francis is a person who has lived this idea, motivating outreach to those on the periphery– both in terms of other faiths, as well as those who are often overlooked by society, including the poor and underprivileged. All throughout his years as a religious leader, he has demonstrated an inclination to accompany those of other religions to strengthen each other, including offering support to Jews, Muslims, and other factions of Christianity, too.
As pope, he has presented a bend toward simplicity through choosing not to live in the papal apartment at the Vatican, and continuing to wear the cross he wore as an archbishop instead of the gold cross that was worn by popes that went before him. He seems to choose less pomp and remains, instead, more concerned about the poor, about everyone being deemed brothers and sisters. One could see that this was his emphasis long before he became the pope, though. When he became the Archbishop of Argentina, the residence of the archbishop had blankets and food inside, and he took those things and gave them to people who needed them.
While serving in that same position, he also amazed people because he answered his own number instead of having other people vet calls for him. Also, he decided to use public transportation because it made it possible for him to communicate with people and see life through their lens. As he has said, “You don’t call the people to the churches; you need to be where the people are.”
While born in Argentina, he speaks many languages other than his native Spanish. He has a great love for the tango and for soccer (as most Argentinians do!). He was raised by his grandmother, and decided to pursue the holy life after having an experience that modified him when he went in for confession as a youth.
He has consistently focused on themes of service, faith, love, reaching out to the poverty-stricken and less fortunate, protecting life, and the importance of marriage. Francis is an example of one dedicated to his beliefs and committed to letting those beliefs influence his behaviors in everyday life.
We love working with faith groups of all denominations and would love to help facilitate your next congregational activity. Call us today and let one of our friendly specialists tailor a transportation plan to meet your precise needs!
(The relevant information for this article originated from the following sources: