Pope Francis

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Jennifer Willman
Journal #5

I like many others, have become intrigued by our newest pope. I found a few articles online that I have found very interesting. This is the first time that I have actually cared or even read about the pope. As I was reading these articles there were little bits that I had to look up because I had no idea what they were or what they meant. Unfortunately, I resorted to reading the wiki website. I could understand what they were talking about on that website, verses other “official” sites that made no sense to me. This weekend I went to the library with my kids and even picked up a book about the Vatican and the history of all the popes. I’m excited to read it and find out about the different popes.

The first article that I read came from http://theweek.com/article/index/241364/6-key-things-everyone-should-know-about-pope-francis. It talked about the major things that we have already learned about the pope, like his one lung, cooking his own food, and using public transportation. The new things for me were later discussed in this article. I was unaware that Pope Francis bathed and kissed the feet of people that had AIDS, and he has, “chastised priest in his archdiocese for refusing to baptize babies born out of wedlock.” Yes most people know that you cannot contract AIDS by just touching a person; but I think it sends a huge statement to people by having our pope bath and kiss their feet. It warms my heart to see Pope Francis giving this gesture to these patients. It was amusing to learn that the pope chose the name Francis to honor St. Francis of Assisi. St. Francis of Assisi was the founder of the Franciscan order. It is amusing because rather then taking the name of St. Francis Xavier who was the Jesuits first member of his order, he chose St. Francis of Assisi; which apparently is a rival to St. Francis Xavier. The article says, “By choosing the name of the founder of his community’s traditional rivals, Pope Francis “has signaled three things: His desire to be a force of unity in a polarized fold, a heart for the poor, and his intent to ‘repair God’s house, which has fallen into ruin.’” Wow, what a smack in the face to others that probably was! But it definitely sends a clear message. I feel that this pope is going to send a lot of new messages and change a lot of things. More interesting info was that, along with his degree’s in chemistry, philosophy, and theology, that Pope Francis was also a teacher. He taught philosophy, theology, literature, and psychology to college students before becoming a bishop. I found it cute that he was once a bouncer for the nightclub called Buenos Aires. He used his money from that job to pay for his pre-ecclesiastical studies.

The second article that I read http://theweek.com/article/index/242601/7-fascinating-things-weve-learned-about-pope-francis, was from the same website, but was posted about two weeks after the other article I read. Yet again it is more insight to our newest pope and how he is already changing the face of the church. It talks about Pope Francis going to pay his own hotel bill, he canceled his own newspaper subscription, and he often says that priests from him on down need to serve people. Another powerful statement from Pope Francis is that he has chosen to live in the Vatican hotel called the Casa Santa Marta, instead of living in the papal apartment at the Apostolic Palace. The article says, “Francis will use the papal apartment as his workspace, to receive official guests and handle papal business. But he’ll live in the antiseptic, institutional hotel with other guest, eating in a communal dining room and celebrating mass with Vatican groundskeepers, domestic staff, and other low-level workers.” Once again, what a statement! He is a man of his people and does not see himself above them but as equal to them. So many enter into a powerful position and let it corrupt them. I pray that Pope Francis continues his ways and...
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