By Carol Glatz
VATICAN CITY — Among his many traits, retired Pope Benedict XVI is well-known as a brilliant professor. But how many people know about Pope Francis’ early ties to teaching and education?
Pope Francis smiles as he meets with students from Jesuit schools at the Vatican June 7, 2013. (CNS photo/Max Rossi, Reuters)
Teaching is a normal part of the Jesuit vocation, and the future pope started out teaching high school literature and psychology right after he got his degree in philosophy. Then, after getting his theology degree, he continued teaching, this time theology and philosophy, and served as a rector of a major seminary in Buenos Aires.
The pope’s experience and insight inspired him to always encourage educators and teachers.
And now a new book, released this month, compiles the reflections, messages and talks he gave to teachers and educators in Argentina between 2008 and 2011.
The book, “Education for Choosing Life,” is being published in English by Ignatius Press. It shows how the pope sees education as “an act of hope” and how faith and the Christian vision of humanity fuel that hope.
He also expresses the need for passion and creativity as added weapons against the spirit of the “mundane” that’s seeking to numb, distract or discourage our youth.
The book is available in other languages through other publishers, but the Ignatius Press’ English-version can only be sold in the U.S., Canada and Mexico, according to the publishers’ website.
Pope Francis’ unique approach to teaching made a huge impact on at least one of his former students, and you can read our story about it right here.
Pope Francis reacts to children during a Year of Faith family life celebration at the Vatican Oct. 26, 2013. (CNS photo/Alessandro Bianchi, Reuters)
The same March 1 “La Civilta Cattolica” article with Jorge Milia included an article the young Father Bergoglio wrote for the high school’s annual publication for the students, parents and alumni in 1965.
The piece focuses on the importance of teaching young people to discern truth from rhetoric and “the song of the Sirens.”
Pope Francis at a Year of Faith celebration of family life Oct. 26, 2013. (CNS photo/Alessandro Bianchi, Reuters)
He wrote (Read More)