with excitement and a clarity
that comes from a trust in
God's goodness. While on a
recent pilgrimage to Rome
and Assisi, I saw the charisma
and message of Pope Francis
drawing larger crowds to
ness to people of all strata of
society, gives a message em-
phasizing the dignity of all people. Through his
example, he is calling everyone to be simple in
our living and loving in our relationships with
all our sisters and brothers. In his creation of a
counsel of church leaders from every continent
we are reminded that all voices are important.
But most of all, Pope Francis is reminding us to
consider the message of Scripture that in lov-
ing our neighbor we love God.
Francis coming to Assisi to celebrate the Feast
of Francis on Oct. 4.
three alumni advocates to raise awareness, donations and spirits.
came on my face. Joy
filled my heart. I knew
he was serious. I even
from St. Bonaventure,
we knew what this
Pope Francis himself. In the best use
of the word, Francis was a radical for
the church, who broke from the sta-
tus quo and returned to the humble
roots of our church, down to earth,
an advocate for the poor. To dwell
among us. Actions speak volumes.
and the opportunity to speak up
against violence, whether it's related
to the death penalty, a measure of
justice reserved mainly for the poor
who cannot mount a solid defense, or
simply that my industry celebrates vio-
lence, especially in movies aimed at
evant. In short, movies without gratu-
itous violence that are likely to slip
past the radar.
ingful to me in simply understanding
on a deeper level the lives of Francis
and Clare; the need for building com-
munity; and the ability to find happi-
ness in less.
duced to the former
Archbishop of Buenos
Aires and heard the
name "Pope Francis,"
the current Bishop of
Rome has presented
the church with hope-
ful signs. The name
Francis, taken from the
Saint from Assisi, is it-
self perhaps the great-
est sign of hope the new pope offers.
tween and kindred spirits of St. Francis
and Pope Francis, few have delved into
the rich, challenging, and complex Fran-
ciscan tradition to highlight the ways in
which the hopeful sign of the name Fran-
cis potentially sets a powerful agenda for
and renouncement of power, his relation-
ship to all of creation, and his simultane-
ous love for and challenge to the church.
power; a reminder that we are also part
of creation and must care for our fellow
brothers and sisters beyond just the
human family is a return to God's inten-
tion for right relationship; and a spirit of
reform of the church with love demon-
strates that challenge and critique do not
mean disloyalty or abandonment. If these
traits carry through in the papacy of Fran-
cis, then we have much for which to be
for Social Concern
P. Horan, O.F.M.
Class of 2005
Franciscan friar of
Holy Name Province
Class of 1988
to the papacy ~ www.sbu.edu/PopeFrancis