Pope Francis Shakes Washington


Pope Francis is currently speaking to Congress as I write this. His speech has had a little something for everyone. He has discussed religious liberty and the sanctity of life, two things that Republicans, I’m sure, will cling to. His devotion to the family is very traditional in the Catholic church. I’m sure conservatives will also point out that he made an visit to one of the groups that sued to knock down the contraception mandate in the ACA. Pope Francis is still a believer in the traditional family structure.

Pope Francis also called on America to live up to it’s progressive values though on this visit. He called for an end to the death penalty. He called for action on income inequality. He called for action to help refugees coming to Europe from the Middle East. He called for continuing work on arms control and working to build bridges to those we disagree with. He called for action and respect for immigrants. He paid tribute to people whom he feels shared Catholic values, including some like Dorothy Day and Thomas Merton. He challenged Congress to take up the cause of the poor, those in need, and those whom we can help.

It was a fascinating speech, and trip to Washington. Very few other leaders in our world could have commanded so much attention, while challenging so many powerful people so directly. That he concludes this leg of the trip by feeding the homeless and hungry is very fitting. This has been a powerful, inspiring trip so far by the Holy Father.


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