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Pope Francis

If you live in Washington, D.C., New York City or Philadelphia, everything about your life patterns last week was altered by these words, “The pope’s in town.” We changed our commute times. We braved the crowds and packed public transportation like sardines to get a glimpse of the holy man. We saw “pope” memorabilia fill […] Read More

The week of Sept. 21 was the week that the better angels of our nature were visibly – personally, corporately, globally – initiated by different houses in the faith community. Cliff Vaughn,’s media producer, and I traveled to Grand Rapids, Michigan, to do video interviews with Christian Reformed Church missionaries to Nigeria, who witnessed […] Read More

U.S. citizens send five pounds of trash per person per day into landfills, according to a recent study by Yale University’s Center for Industrial Ecology. Yale’s analysis determined that 262 million tons of garbage was disposed of in the U.S. in 2012, the latest data available, compared to estimates by the Environmental Protection Agency of […] Read More

True to form, Pope Francis demonstrated humility in his way of interacting with all people, not only those in secular or sacred halls of power, during his trip to the U.S. last week. A pontiff who prefers to eat with the homeless rather than national leaders is a different type of religious leader than one […] Read More

The White House released Wednesday morning, Sept. 23, following a private meeting between Pope Francis and President Obama, a fact sheet expressing a commitment to “advancing shared values for a better world.” This document addresses a number of topics – the refugee crisis, poverty and creation care, as well as a significant focus on protecting […] Read More

Bread for the World released Tuesday morning, Sept. 22, a statement signed by Christian, Jewish and Muslim leaders urging a broad commitment, transcending religious and political differences, to end hunger by 2030. Sixty-seven faith leaders signed the statement. Catholic signatories included Bishop Denis Madden (Archdiocese of Baltimore), Sister Simone Campbell (executive director, NETWORK) and Bill […] Read More

Most Protestants, perhaps, have not paid a lot of attention to what the pope has said and done through the years. But things have changed somewhat since Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio of Argentina was elected pope in February 2013. Choosing Francis as his papal name in honor of Saint Francis of Assisi, Pope Francis has often […] Read More

Sixty percent of U.S. adults have a positive perception of Pope Francis, up from 54 percent in 2014, according to a Barna Research Group report. The pope polled most favorably among “Gen-Xers” (born between 1965 and 1983) with 71 percent approval, a 20 percent increase from 2014. While favorability also rose among Millennials (1984 to […] Read More

Pope Francis addressed recently an ever-present challenge for local church leaders – the disconnect between the academy (seminaries, religion departments, divinity schools) and the local church. The theme of a papal address at the Pontifical Catholic University of Argentina was “church doctrine must never be isolated from a practical pastoral context.” “Not infrequently an opposition […] Read More

Tuesday, Sept. 1, was a special day. By declaration of Pope Francis, it was the first World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation. For several weeks, the current pope has been making news with his strong affirmation that we have a divine obligation to care for God’s good earth. In an effort to […] Read More