He is a model of the New Evangelization that we can all imitate.
After his visit to the United States, the sense is that Pope Francis has done a remarkable job in connecting with people beyond the Church. True, there is constant argument about what he actually says, what people want him to say and what he really means. But despite the confusion no one can doubt that he has a knack for connecting with people.
I am presenting three articles about him to mark the occasion of his visit, sparked off by a conversation with a friend who told me that she had noticed how many of her friends, especially non-Catholics seemed to warm to him. We were asking ourselves why he is so popular. Is it really just that the non-Catholics like him because he sounds as though he is reversing Catholic teaching? I don’t think so as you’ll see. You will see that I am largely still optimistic about the Franciscan papacy. I do hope that I feel the same after the synod on the family which is taking place as speak
Two of these three contain some things I have written before, but represented in this new context.
How does he do it? The answer, I believe is quite simple and it is nothing to do with PR tactics or political spinning if ever there was a Pope that really seemed less interested and less skilled in the art of polished media manipulation it is this one. Rather, to the degree that he is connecting with people and drawing them to the truth, what is drawing people in is supernatural.
Those who do not believe in the supernatural will not account for it in this way, even if they like him, but that doesn’t invalidate the point. I suggest that what we see here is a case of the New Evangelization at work. For Catholics it works like this – or rather it ought to if we followed the Church’s teaching: by our participation in the sacramental life, we are transformed supernaturally so that we partake of the divine nature. By degrees in this life, and fully in the next, we enter into the mystery of the Trinity, relating personally to the divine godhead by being united to the mystical body of Christ, the Church. When this happens we shine with the light of Truth as Christ did at (Read More)