November 26th, 2013
10:21 AM ET

Pope Francis: No more business as usual

By Daniel Burke, Belief Blog Co-editor
[twitter-follow screen_name='BurkeCNN']

(CNN) - Pope Francis on Tuesday called for big changes in the Roman Catholic Church - including at the very top  saying the church needs to rethink rules and customs that are no longer widely understood or effective for evangelizing.

"I prefer a Church which is bruised, hurting and dirty because it has been out on the streets, rather than a Church which is unhealthy from being confined and from clinging to its own security," the Pope said in a major new statement.

"I do not want a Church concerned with being at the center and then ends by being caught up in a web of obsessions and procedures," Francis added.

The Pope's address, called an "apostolic exhortation," is part mission statement, part pep talk for the world's 1.5 billion Catholics. Francis' bold language and sweeping call for change are likely to surprise even those who've grown accustomed to his unconventional papacy.

"Not everyone will like this document," said the Rev. James Martin, a Jesuit priest and author in New York. "For it poses a fierce challenge to the status quo."

And it's not just a verbal challenge, the Pope said on Tuesday.

"I want to emphasize that what I am trying to express here has a programmatic significance and important consequences."

Since his election in March, Pope Francis, the first pontiff to hail from Latin America, has made headlines by decrying the iniquities of modern capitalism, embracing the poor and people with disabilities and reaching out to gays and lesbians.

At the same time, the 77-year-old pontiff has sought to to awaken a spirit of joy and compassion in the church, scolding Catholic "sourpusses" who hunt down rule-breakers and calling out a "tomb psychology" that "slowly transforms Christians into mummies in a museum."

"An evangelizer must never look like someone who has just come back from a funeral!" the Pope said.

Officially known in Latin as "Evangelii Gaudium" (The Joy of the Gospel), the 85-page statement released on Tuesday is the first official document written entirely by Pope Francis. (An earlier document was co-written by Francis and Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI.)

Although Francis sprinkles the statement with citations of previous popes and Catholic luminaries like St. Thomas Aquinas and St. Augustine, the new pontiff makes a bold call for the church to rethink even long-held traditions.

"In her ongoing discernment, the Church can also come to see that certain customs not directly connected to the heart of the Gospel, even some which have deep historical roots, are no longer properly understood and appreciated," the Pope said.

"Some of these customs may be beautiful, but they no longer serve as means of communicating the Gospel. We should not be afraid to re-examine them. At the same time, the Church has rules or precepts which may have been quite effective in their time, but no longer have the same usefulness for directing and shaping people’s lives."

Such statements mark a sharp break from Benedict XVI, a more tradition-bound pope who focused on cleaning up cobwebs of unorthodoxy in the church.

By contrast, in "Evangelii" Francis repeats his calls for Catholics to stop "obsessing" about culture war issues and to focus more on spreading the Gospel, especially to the poor and marginalized.

READ MORE: The Pope’s bold new vision

The outside world, particularly its economic inequalities, didn't escape Francis' notice either.

In a section of "Evangelii" entitled "some challenges to today's world," he sharply criticized what he called an "idolatry of money" and "the inequality that spawns violence."

The Pope also blasted "trickle-down economics," saying the theory "expresses a crude and naïve trust in the goodness of those wielding economic power."

“Meanwhile,” Francis said, “the excluded are still waiting.”

But the bulk of Francis' statement addresses the church, which, he said, should not be afraid to "get its shoes soiled by the mud of the street."

The Pope also hinted that he wants to see an end to the so-called "wafer wars," in which Catholic politicians who support abortion rights are denied Holy Communion. His comments could also be taken as another sign that he plans to reform church rules that prevent divorced Catholics from receiving the Eucharist.

"Everyone can share in some way in the life of the Church; everyone can be part of the community, nor should the doors of the sacraments be closed for simply any reason," Francis said.

"The Eucharist, although it is the fullness of sacramental life, is not a prize for the perfect but a powerful medicine and nourishment for the weak."

Even so, Francis reiterated the church's stand against abortion, defending it against critics who call such arguments "ideological, obscurantist and conservative."

"Precisely because this involves the internal consistency of our message about the value of the human person, the Church cannot be expected to change her position on this question," Francis said.

The Pope also reiterated previous rejections on ordaining women, saying the topic is "not open for discussion."

But that doesn't mean the church values men more than women, he said.

"We need to create still broader opportunities for a more incisive female presence in the Church," the Pope said.

Francis also said he expects other parts of the church to change, and called on Catholics to be unafraid of trying new things.

"More than by fear of going astray, my hope is that we will be moved by the fear of remaining shut up within structures which give us a false sense of security, within rules which make us harsh judges, within habits which make us feel safe, while at our door people are starving."

Francis didn't mention specific reforms, but he suggested that it could include changes at the very top of the church.

"Since I am called to put into practice what I ask of others, I too must think about a conversion of the papacy," he said.

READ MORE: Pope Francis: Church can't 'interfere' with gays

The church's centralization, where all roads lead to Rome, and the "we've always done it this way" type of thinking have hindered Catholics' ability to minister to local people in far-flung places, Francis suggested.

"I invite everyone to be bold and creative in this task of rethinking the goals, structures, style and methods of evangelization in their respective communities," the Pope said.

Martin, the Jesuit priest and author, said he could not recall ever "reading a papal document that was so thought-provoking, surprising and invigorating."

"The document’s main message is that Catholics should be unafraid of new ways of proclaiming the Gospel and new ways of thinking about the church."


The disfigured man in popular photos talks about the Pope's embrace 

Opinion – the Pope’s revolutionary message 

- CNN Religion Editor

Filed under: Catholic Church • Christianity • Pope Francis

soundoff (2,437 Responses)
  1. Quest ion

    So then; what was the usual business?

    What is the business?

    What was usual?

    November 27, 2013 at 10:02 pm |
  2. anthrogirl

    The conservative Catholics in the Catholic Answers Forum are slamming CNN for misrepresenting the Pope. They blame translations problems, etc. The liberals in the forum are having a field day. It's quite humorous to watch. For example, there was an argument about Walmart where the conservatives were defending excessive corporate wealth because it's a by-product of holy capitalism. The liberals were arguing that it didn't matter where the greed came from, greed is greed. Then the Pope spoke. It was lovely to watch.

    November 27, 2013 at 9:27 pm |
    • Casey

      Consider putting together a coherent thought.

      November 27, 2013 at 9:30 pm |
      • anthrogirl

        Nasty much?

        November 27, 2013 at 9:34 pm |
      • Small "c"

        I rather thought she did. Were you actually reading her words?

        November 30, 2013 at 3:25 am |
    • Akira

      What is "holy capitalism"? I don't think I've ever seen that term.

      November 27, 2013 at 9:58 pm |
      • Quest ion

        Are you Akira the Por-n Star in the movies?

        November 27, 2013 at 10:03 pm |
        • Akira


          November 27, 2013 at 10:18 pm |
      • Jonah

        It's the same thing as the prosperity theology:

        Prosperity theology (sometimes referred to as the prosperity gospel, the health and wealth gospel, or the gospel of success)[A] is a Christian religious doctrine that financial blessing is the will of God for Christians, and that faith, positive speech, and donations to Christian ministries will always increase one's material wealth. Based on non-traditional interpretations of the Bible, often with emphasis on the Book of Malachi, the doctrine views the Bible as a contract between God and humans: if humans have faith in God, he will deliver his promises of security and prosperity. Confessing these promises to be true is perceived as an act of faith, which God will honor.

        November 28, 2013 at 2:04 am |
        • lol??

          Property rights have zilch to do with "blab it and grab it theology". Socie gubmints grab everytjing, 'specially in the War on Drugs. All's fair in LUV and War.

          November 28, 2013 at 9:17 am |
  3. Cal

    big smile here

    November 27, 2013 at 9:24 pm |
    • doobzz

      Did you figure out why Jesus lied about his return yet?

      November 27, 2013 at 9:35 pm |
      • PortOurTroops

        He never left, He has 1.5 billion Catholic witnesses and a billion more Protestants.

        November 27, 2013 at 10:12 pm |
        • doobzz

          I was referring to a question that Cal never answered in another thread.

          But since you brought it up, no, he left when he died, just like everyone does.

          Witnesses, lol.

          November 28, 2013 at 12:42 am |
  4. Robert Brown

    1 Chronicles 16:34
    O give thanks unto the Lord; for he is good; for his mercy endureth for ever.

    November 27, 2013 at 7:08 pm |
    • Robert Brown

      Luke 22:19
      And he took bread, and gave thanks, and brake it, and gave unto them, saying, This is my body which is given for you: this do in remembrance of me.

      November 27, 2013 at 7:14 pm |
      • Robert Brown

        Hebrews 13:15
        By him therefore let us offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually, that is, the fruit of our lips giving thanks to his name.

        November 27, 2013 at 7:19 pm |
      • Mrs. Buttersworth

        No Jew would have EVER even thought of drinking blood.
        It was an abomination.
        Proof they just made up the Last Supper.

        November 27, 2013 at 8:21 pm |
        • Robert Brown

          How about wine?

          November 27, 2013 at 8:29 pm |
        • Mrs. Buttersworth

          Apparently you never read the gospels.

          November 27, 2013 at 8:59 pm |
        • Cal

          What it is – is proof of the radical nature of the ministry of Jesus- he mentions in the book of John about eating his flesh and drinking his blood- AND many left following him after that. And Jesus asks his disciples will you also leave me? His ministry was so different from what was expected that it was not easy for many to believe- and many did not or left later. He required your total faith to be his followers and they did not have the benefit of the gospels as we do to help with their understanding. BUT they did have the wonderful good fortune to live is His presence, to see his miracles, to be called his friend- after Pentecost they would change the world and almost all die violent deaths but were faithful to their Lord and Master.

          November 27, 2013 at 9:14 pm |
        • doobzz

          @ Cal

          You still haven't explained why Jesus said "I and the father are one" but he doesn't know the day of his return because "only the father knows".

          Keep up with the pious attttude though.

          November 27, 2013 at 9:34 pm |
        • Woody

          "He required your total faith to be his followers..........." – Cal

          Same M.O. as Hitler, Manson, Koresh, Jim Jones, Rev. Moon and every other megalomaniac down through history. If the hearsay stories of the bible are even remotely accurate, Jesus may have well fit in to this category.

          November 27, 2013 at 10:41 pm |
        • Reality # 2

          Actually, all of John's Gospel is of questionable historic value.

          To wit:

          From Professor Bruce Chilton in his book, Rabbi Jesus,

          "Conventionally, scholarship has accorded priority to the first three gospels in historical work on Jesus, putting progressively less credence in works of late date. John's Gospel for example is routinely dismissed as a source......

          From http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gospel_of_John#Authorship

          "Since "the higher criticism" of the 19th century, some historians have largely rejected the gospel of John as a reliable source of information about the historical Jesus.[3][4] "[M]ost commentators regard the work as anonymous,"[5] and date it to 90-100."

          "The authorship has been disputed since at least the second century, with mainstream Christianity believing that the author is John the Apostle, son of Zebedee. Modern experts usually consider the author to be an unknown non-eyewitness, though many apologetic Christian scholars still hold to the conservative Johannine view that ascribes authorship to John the Apostle."

          And from Professor Gerd Ludemann, in his book, Jesus After 2000 Years, p. 416,

          "Anyone looking for the historical Jesus will not find him in the Gospel of John. "

          See also http://www.earlychristianwritings.com/john.html

          November 27, 2013 at 11:22 pm |
        • hearties

          I love the gospels of John. Actually all the gospels for that matter. No better book anywhere than the bible. The bible has God's words in it, and people praising God, and some history too. What's not to love? It is the best.

          November 28, 2013 at 4:26 am |
      • lol??

        Dan 6:10
        Now when Daniel knew that the writing was signed, he went into his house; and his windows being open in his chamber toward Jerusalem, he kneeled upon his knees three times a day, and prayed, and gave thanks before his God, as he did aforetime

        People eat three times a day. When they say thanks, are they thanking for the food which, normally, everybody gets?? Or are they remembering Jesus being offered as a sacrifice?? The Corinthians were having feasts at their meetings and getting, ahem, carried away. Gubmint FIX: Make it a sacrament. That's why you don't want the US Army in charge of marriage.

        November 27, 2013 at 9:05 pm |
      • Reality # 2

        Previously noted on p. 29:

        As with a lot of the NT, the Last Supper is a myth.

        For example:


        An excerpt:

        "At the same time, Luedemann concludes that the portrayal of Jesus celebrating such a ritual on the night before his death is not historical. He is clear that there is "no generic relationship" between any actual final meal and the Lord's Supper understood in cultic terms. He also denies the Passover character of the supper as a Markan creation. Like Meier (below), Luedemann does accept the saying (Mark 14:25) about drinking wine in the kingdom of God as authentic. He concludes: (this saying) "hardly came into being in the early community, for in it Jesus does not exercise any special function for believers at the festal meal in heaven which is imminent. Only Jesus' expectation of a the future kingdom of God stands at the centre, not Jesus as saviour, judge or intercessor."

        November 27, 2013 at 11:18 pm |
  5. lol??

    "Blessed are the Cheesemakers

    That is a childish argument, if your god needs my acknowledgement he will have to do better. I will not worship any god that rewards and punishes based on belief. You never answered the question and I am not surprised. You know deep down that doing so is not moral or ethical otherwise you would be able to argue that it is. Instead you just keep spouting bible verses."
    Plenty of people on this planet never received justice. God will make it right. You don't care?? That's not ethical and will be judged.

    November 27, 2013 at 6:39 pm |
    • ?

      Are you Cal? No? Then shut up.

      November 27, 2013 at 7:16 pm |
      • doobzz

        Are you the internet police? No? Then shut up.

        November 27, 2013 at 7:18 pm |
  6. Linda Mitchell

    Brave new world, bold new vision, HOWEVER, women ordained as priests, Not Open for Discussion. Give me a break.

    November 27, 2013 at 6:34 pm |
    • doobzz

      All sizzle, no steak.

      November 27, 2013 at 7:11 pm |
    • Mrs. Buttersworth

      Deborah was the greatest Judge in Israel's history. She was the mother of Israel, the first REAL actual historical person.
      Moses and Abraham were mythical.

      November 27, 2013 at 8:23 pm |
      • Cal

        I disagree that Moses and Abraham were not real people- but you certainly may believe- amazing that you would not believe in them but would for Deborah

        November 27, 2013 at 9:17 pm |
        • doobzz

          Abraham – isn't he the guy who whored out his wife/sister twice to save his own skin and raped his wife's slave girl?

          November 27, 2013 at 9:44 pm |
      • lol??

        How much margarine of error are you allowing yourself in these statements??

        November 27, 2013 at 9:22 pm |
  7. Robert Brown

    2 Samuel 22:50
    Therefore I will give thanks unto thee, O Lord, among the heathen, and I will sing praises unto thy name.

    November 27, 2013 at 6:14 pm |
    • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

      I prefer "apostate".

      November 27, 2013 at 6:18 pm |
      • Robert Brown

        1 Thessalonians 5:18
        In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.

        November 27, 2013 at 7:05 pm |
        • Mrs. Buttersworth

          Yes. By all means thank him for killing all the people in the Phillipines. Such a wonderful deity ya got there. Truly wonderful.

          November 27, 2013 at 9:01 pm |
        • Cal

          And sadly for you, if you believe that the Father ordered their deaths then in my opinion you do not know him very well if at all.

          November 27, 2013 at 9:21 pm |
        • doobzz

          @ Cal

          And sadly for you, you don't even know how to answer basic questions about your beliefs. Hypocrite.

          November 27, 2013 at 9:29 pm |
  8. amacd385

    Pope Francis's recognition and exposure of EMPIRE:

    The Pope, like Assange, Manning, Snowden, Hedges, et al. is essentially Exposing EMPIRE.

    Francis is exposing, 'calling-out', educating, and un-cloaking the VEMPIRE of this axis of Vampires, this corporate, financial, militarist, media, extra-legal, and corrupt political Global Empire, which has 'captured' and now fully "Occupies" our former country (and others like the UK, France, Germany, Israel, et al.) by hiding behind the facade of its modernized Dual-Party 'Vichy' sham of democracy - as surely as the earlier Nazi EMPIRE tried less successfully to hide behind its crude single-party Vichy facade regime in the 'captured' and "Occupied" country of France c. 1940.

    Francis has not explicitly said it yet, and he may not even sense that it is what he is doing, but the totality of his epiphany and his paradigm shift is that he is exposing and rejecting the Disguised Global Empire that 99% of us have been oppressed by and 'subjects' of for decades without our ever having the prophetic insight and honesty to conclude that "this is no longer the democracy we deserve, but it has turned against us, and is battering us, and if we do not stand-up and leave it, then it will kill us."

    Like Dr. Margaret Flowers said in a very insightful interview on the Bill Moyers' show - its like an abusive relationship, where someone we thought we loved has changed and is being abusive. It takes a recognition that this is wrong this person or this government is no longer what we hoped or thought it was. And if we don't realize that the democratic Republic has turned into an Empire, or if the partner has turned into an abuser, and get away - then it will end badly or deadly.

    The hoped for American Republic has been distorted and, like many republics, has suffered the 'Empire disease', (or the Empire cancer) and has been turned into something much darker, vicious, abusive, and dangerous although we were blinded to its transformation into an EMPIRE.

    Ironically, Francis, of the Roman Catholic Church, has recognized what Jesus recognized of the Roman Empire two millennia ago when he opposed the infected Roman Republic that had become an Empire.

    Best luck and love to the fast expanding 'Occupy the Empire' educational and non-violent revolutionary movement against this deceitful and Disguised Global EMPIRE, which can't so easily be identified as wearing Red Coats, Red Stars, nor funny looking Nazi helmets -- quite yet!

    Liberty, democracy, justice, and equality
    Violent ('Vichy' disguised)

    Alan MacDonald
    Sanford, Maine

    We don't merely have a gun/fear problem, or an MIC problem, or an 'Austerity' problem, or an expanding wars problem, or a 'drone assassinations' problem, or a vast income & wealth inequality problem, or a Wall Street 'looting' problem, or a Global Warming and environmental death-spiral problem, or a domestic tyranny FISA, NDAA, and NSA SPYING problem, or the world's largest political prisoner problem, or the crappy un-healthy insurance problem, or, or, or ... ad nauseam - we have a hidden VEMPIRE cancerous tumor which is the prime CAUSE of all these underlying, related, and mere 'symptom problems'

    November 27, 2013 at 5:40 pm |
  9. Vic

    To Pope Francis:


    November 27, 2013 at 5:27 pm |
    • lol??

      Protesters give legitimacy to the powers. Jesus was quite silent at times.

      November 27, 2013 at 5:31 pm |
      • doobzz

        You should follow his example on that one.

        November 27, 2013 at 5:37 pm |
        • lol??

          Go back to yer zzz"s.

          November 27, 2013 at 5:38 pm |
        • doobzz

          Aw, lolly, what's the matter? PMS? Pray to Jesus, maybe he's taking a break from helping Tim Tebow find his career.

          November 27, 2013 at 5:42 pm |
    • doobzz

      Vic, I don't think he reads this blog.

      November 27, 2013 at 5:44 pm |
      • Vic

        Probably so; it is for the Catholics who do, and to spread the message.

        November 27, 2013 at 5:50 pm |
        • doobzz

          Perhaps you should address it to them, then.

          November 27, 2013 at 5:52 pm |
    • Jesse Christ

      The Protestant Reformation, wherein Luther et al got tired of the Pope telling them what to do. They wanted to murder Jews and torture ppl who disagreed with them on their own. And now? Actually they are the ones now screaming loudest at whom they consider to be evil and the worst sinners. They are no less hypocritical than their Catholic brethren in that regard. Now they've banded together in the War on Women. Nice...

      November 27, 2013 at 8:41 pm |
  10. lol??

    I heard a catholic woman say that nuns in a monastery were the bride of Christ. And She votes! Apparently the gnostic threat continued.

    November 27, 2013 at 5:27 pm |
    • Ted

      Freaking weirdo.

      November 27, 2013 at 5:45 pm |
  11. chris

    sounds like the Pope is the one leading the catholic church... not God. Some divine inspiration.......

    November 27, 2013 at 4:38 pm |
    • Cal

      you don't think a man of God can speak for God? That about it?

      November 27, 2013 at 4:46 pm |
      • lol??

        It is the original gubmint church of the big tent.

        November 27, 2013 at 5:01 pm |
        • Cal

          I hardly think that the church of God- God's church is comparable with the political parties of today- even though some denominations have tried to play politics far too often I would agree

          November 27, 2013 at 5:05 pm |
      • doobzz

        I have it on good authority that Cerberus thinks Jesus is a wimp.

        November 27, 2013 at 5:11 pm |
  12. alec

    I think Pope Francis is the best pope we have for a long time. He is compassionate, logical, intelligent, brave and humble. He puts people ahead of tradition and is not afraid to call out the hypocrisy in the establishment. He reminds me of Jesus.
    He is definitely not your ordinary cardinal.

    November 27, 2013 at 3:46 pm |
    • doobzz

      Several thousand children would disagree.

      November 27, 2013 at 3:48 pm |
      • get the facts

        estimated to be over 100,000 worldwide. In third world countries, they are still abusing children.

        November 27, 2013 at 3:50 pm |
        • doobzz

          Indeed they are, and this pope is still protecting them.

          November 27, 2013 at 3:52 pm |
        • get the facts

          he allows the bishops to lobby in states as NY, Pa and OH against any Bill that would expose abuse cover ups.

          That's just who he is and his team of cardinals and bishops. Covers continue.

          November 27, 2013 at 3:55 pm |
        • ?

          So many Bishops should be prison chaplains until they serve their full sentence.

          November 27, 2013 at 4:07 pm |
    • get the facts

      and he deflects from his #1 responsibility –> take care of those abused by the Vatican cover ups, destroyed lives.

      Makes him dishonest.

      November 27, 2013 at 3:49 pm |
    • Charm Quark

      Jesus said suffer the little children to come onto me, not bugger the little children that come onto the clergy, there is a difference. Of course jesus was a corruption devised by the hustlers to get a good scam up and running and boy did it take off, breaking bad around 300 AD.

      November 27, 2013 at 4:16 pm |
    • Reject Religious Fairy Tales

      You mean the Jesus who is the CEO of a multi-billion dollar commercial enterprise? The Jesus who lives in a big, gold-leafed palace? The Jesus who lobbies against legislation to compensate kids who have been buggered by His priests? That Jesus?

      November 27, 2013 at 4:28 pm |
  13. get the facts

    Vatican recently caught money laundering in Italy. They money laundered in the USA in the late 80's. Imagine what they do in countries where laws are more forgiving to these con men.

    BTW, Catholic Charities operates primarily off our tax dollars. Everyone pays, the church makes you think they do this stuff.

    A corrupt organization from its origins.

    November 27, 2013 at 3:34 pm |
    • ?

      Vote Protestant fer sure.

      November 27, 2013 at 5:50 pm |
  14. The truth

    Cardinal Dolan compared the children abused to prost-t-itutes

    Bill Donohue, president of the Catholic League, paid for a full page advertisement in the Detriot newspaper stating clergy abuse victims are liars.

    This is your catholic church

    November 27, 2013 at 3:13 pm |
  15. KellyinBoston

    I was a little surprised that the Pope wasn't considering acceptance of women into the priesthood.

    November 27, 2013 at 3:12 pm |
    • igaftr

      What good is a preist who is not allowed to speak in church? (corinthians 14:34)

      November 27, 2013 at 3:16 pm |
      • doobzz

        What good is a priest who isn't interested in buggering altar boys?

        November 27, 2013 at 3:24 pm |
  16. Ksmith

    This guy is just plain awsome. I don't think there is a single soul out there who doesn't recognize the kindness in this person...and this comment comes from an atheist!

    November 27, 2013 at 3:11 pm |
    • Abused

      OK priest

      November 27, 2013 at 3:16 pm |
    • doobzz

      You're wrong. Plenty of people recognize good PR tactics when they see them.

      November 27, 2013 at 7:26 pm |
  17. AbusedByCatholic priests

    ** To those who are unaware. PLEASE NOTE!

    The US catholic bishops are actively lobbying to stop laws which help children victims of abuse. They are doing so under the approval of this pope.

    Victims denied, yet the truth is the greatest healer. Nothing like being denied as a child, being called a liar by your once catholic peers and now by laws which deny you again by the successful lobby efforts of this religion.

    This pope is NOT a nice person.

    November 27, 2013 at 3:10 pm |
    • SimpleSkeptic

      I sure hope you have evidence to back that up

      November 27, 2013 at 3:18 pm |
      • Abused

        easy to find, google 'Catholic bishops lobby to stop Markey CVA Bill from passing' Lots of articles

        November 27, 2013 at 3:20 pm |
      • Abused

        I also go to Albany, NY once a year while the bishops lobby there. They call victims liars.

        November 27, 2013 at 3:21 pm |
  18. Nothing good, Abused

    If this were a good and honest man, he'd 1st take care of the victims and families of the abused and hold all those responsible to the cover ups.

    Then again, he'd have to be a good and honest person for that.

    His deflections as this (his PR called the media so they could publish) are simply a distraction and actions of a deceitful person.

    November 27, 2013 at 2:59 pm |
    • Cal

      I am not catholic and do know know the pope- but if anything has jumped out at me about this man is that he is a good man and I thank God for his words and how he is leading the church by example

      November 27, 2013 at 3:23 pm |
      • doobzz

        It's a good thing you like his words, because that's all he's done so far is talk.

        November 27, 2013 at 3:25 pm |
        • Cal

          And he has not impacted Christians around the world already with his words- his encouragement- his love? Really?

          November 27, 2013 at 3:42 pm |
        • doobzz

          He has a very good PR department and has made some speeches, but still won't address the conspiracy to protect pedophile priests. Until he does that, he's just another in a long line of pious liars.

          November 27, 2013 at 3:51 pm |
        • get the facts

          it's all about marketing. This joker of a pope is nothing more than a dishonest con.

          PR calls up media, he hugs a man. That does zero. Doctors without borders do far more than this joker.

          November 27, 2013 at 3:52 pm |
        • doobzz

          @ get the facts

          The least he could have done was heal the poor man. I mean, he's so holy and does have that red phone straight to god, it should have been easy.

          November 27, 2013 at 3:59 pm |
      • Abused

        what example? His first responsibility would be to the lives destroyed by the Vatican and clergy. Instead he deflects. His PR calls the media for staging these things.

        Like hugging the deformed guy, all for show. There are far better people, as doctors and nurses, who help for free. And they actually do something.

        again, his number 1 responsibility was to the damage caused to children. He elects not to, that's deception.

        November 27, 2013 at 3:31 pm |
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About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.