Pope Francis in His Own Words

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9780007529698: Pope Francis in His Own Words

A wide-ranging collection of quotes from the new Pope's writings and speeches, revealing his opinions on the moral issues surrounding the Catholic Church today. Pope Francis won the hearts of Catholics all over the world when he was elected in March 2013, with his natural humility and commitment to putting those who are poor at the centre of his mission. Jorge Mario Bergoglio - the 265th successor of St Peter and the first non-European Pope in over 1200 years - has encouraged people to live simpler lives and shown the world a more compassionate face of Catholicism, bringing fresh hope for a renewal in the Church. In his own life, he has long demonstrated both his belief in simplicity and his concern for those who are poor, refusing to live in palatial accommodation during his tenure as a cardinal in Buenos Aires, riding the bus to work and even persuading the diocese to allow a group of poor missionaries to live in the official residence. 'Pope Francis in His Own Words' has been compiled to give Catholics and non-Catholics alike an insight into the thoughts of the new pontiff.

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About the Author:

Julie Schwietert Collazo is a bilingual Catholic writer who has written about everything from scientific research at Guantanamo Bay to fashion design in Nicaragua. She lives in New York. Lisa Rogak is the New York Times bestselling author of more than forty books (including Barack Obama in His Own Words). Her books have been reviewed in scores of publications such as the Wall Street Journal and USA Today. She lives in New Hampshire.

Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.:


Introduction

"I’ll just go with the guys on the bus."

What the newly-elected Pope told his limo driver and security driver after his initial introduction to crowds in Rome

With the election of Argentina’s Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio as the new Pope of the Catholic Church in March 2013, attention has turned worldwide not only towards what he will do as Pope but how he has lived – and preached – in the past. So far, it’s very clear that compared to other Popes, he has led a humble and unconventional life. For instance, as a cardinal, instead of asking to be addressed as ‘Your Eminence’, he preferred to simply be called ‘Father Jorge.’

Some of the first photos to be published after he was introduced to happy throngs of worshippers in St Peter’s Square reveal that humility and the desire to serve the poor is deep in his blood. One in particular showed him kneeling to wash the feet of a woman, while other news reports had him performing the same service for AIDS patients. It’s hard to imagine his predecessor at the Vatican doing likewise.

It’s clear that his humility and desire to meet with the people on their level – whether they’re Catholics or not – has already won him huge numbers of fans. He cracks jokes, doesn’t hesitate to challenge his country’s leaders on their inequities, and pushes away chauffeurs and luxury transport in order to press the flesh with commoners. And numerous news stories have shown that he offers great compassion towards those who have long been ostracized by churches of all stripes.

At the same time, he shows that he’s a real person, with human desires that he indulges wholeheartedly (well, at least a few…). After all, when’s the last time you heard of a Pope who admits to loving tango and who’s pledged his undying loyalty to one Buenos Aires football club since childhood?

He also walks the walk, which instantly won him respect and admiration around the world. During his tenure as a cardinal in Buenos Aires, Bergoglio refused to live in the luxury accommodation in the palace that previous cardinals called home. Instead, he rented a Spartan one-bedroom apartment where he cooked his own simple dinners and took the bus to work, and persuaded the diocese to allow a group of poor missionaries to live in the official residence.

SAMPLE QUOTATIONS

ON ARGENTINA

Is it true that Argentineans don’t want to dialogue? I wouldn’t put it that way. Rather, I think we’ve become victims of attitudes that don’t permit us to dialogue: arrogance, the inability to listen, an exasperation with language... and so many others.

Sobre El Cielo y La Tierra

ON ARGENTINA’S DIRTY WAR

We believe that the steps taken by the justice system in clarifying these events must serve to renew the efforts of all citizens toward reconciliation, and are a call to distance ourselves not only from impunity but from hatred and rancor as well. [Any Catholic who participated did so] on his own responsibility, erring and sinning gravely against God, against mankind, and against his own conscience.

Interpress Service, October 11, 2007

ON ASKING CATHOLICS FOR THEIR PRAYERS

I would like to give you a blessing, but first I want to ask you for a favor. Before the bishop blesses the people, I ask that you pray to the Lord so that he blesses me.

Reuters, March 13, 2013

ON BAPTIZING THE CHILDREN OF SINGLE PARENTS

The child has absolutely no responsibility for the state of his parents’ marriage. And often a baptism can be a new start for the parents as well.

Hindustan Times, March 14, 2013

In our ecclesiastical region, there are priests who don’t baptize the children of single mothers because they weren’t conceived in the sanctity of marriage. These are today’s hypocrites. Those who clericalize the church. Those who separate the people of God from salvation. And this poor girl who, rather than returning the child to sender, had the courage to carry it into the world, must wander from parish to parish until her child can be baptized!

New York Daily News, March 14, 2013

ON BEING CHOSEN AS POPE

As you know the duty of the conclave is to give Rome a bishop. It seems that my brother cardinals went almost to the end of the world. But here we are.

Reuters, March 13, 2013

May God forgive you. (said to the Cardinals after being elected.)

The Telegraph (U.K.), March 14, 2013

ON BUENOS AIRES

For many, Buenos Aires is a factory of slaves...a meat grinder which destroys their lives, breaks their will, and deprives them of freedom.”

Vatican Insider, December 15, 2011

ON CARDINALS

The cardinalate is a service, it is not an award to be bragged about.
America Magazine, March 13, 2013

Cardinals are not NGO representatives, but servants of the Lord, inspired by the Holy Spirit, which is the One who is really able to differentiate charismas, unifying them in the Church. A cardinal must be able to differentiate between charismas and at the same time look towards unity, aware that the creator of difference and unity is the Holy Spirit itself. Cardinals who do not enter this frame of mind, in my view, are not cardinals in the way Benedict XVI would like them to be.

Vatican Insider, February 24, 2012

ON CATHOLIC LIFE

When one does not walk, one halts. When one does not build on stone what happens? That happens which happens to children on the beach when they make sand castles, it all comes down, it is without substance.

Homily, First Papal Mass, March 14, 2013

To walk, to build/construct, to confess. But the matter is not so easy, because in walking, in building, in confessing, at times there are shocks, there are movements that are not properly movements of the journey: they are movements that set us back.

Homily, First Papal Mass, March 14, 2013

ON CHILDREN

What world are we leaving our children? Maybe it would be better to ask: ‘What children are we giving this world? Homily, January 9, 1999

LifeSiteNews.com, October 5, 2007

Children are mistreated, and are not educated or fed. Many are made into prostitutes and exploited. And this happens here in Buenos Aires, in the great city of the south. Child prostitution is offered in some five star hotels: it is included in the entertainment menu, under the heading ‘Other.’

ON THE CHURCH

We have to avoid the spiritual sickness of a self-referential church. It’s true that by straying from its path, as can happen to any man or woman, accidents can happen. But if the Church stays enclosed within itself, self-referential, it will grow old. And between a Church that accidentally strays off its path and one that is sick because of self-reference, I have no doubt: I prefer the former.

El Mundo, March 14, 2013

I must not be scandalized by the fact that the Church is my mother: I must look at its sings and shortcomings as I would look at my mother’s sins and shortcomings. And when I think of her, I remember the good and beautiful things she has achieved, more than her weaknesses and defects. A mother defends herself with a heart filled with love before doing so with words. I wonder whether there is any love for the Church in the hearts of those who pay so much attention to the scandals.

Vatican Insider, February 24, 2012

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