Pope Francis Calls on Journalists to Give ‘Special Attention to Truth, Goodness and Beauty’

Kate O’Hare
Big Peace
17 Mar 2013

On Saturday, March 16, three days after being elected Supreme Pontiff of the Roman Catholic Church, Pope Francis met with over 5,000 journalists and media – including some of their family members – at the Paul VI Hall at the Vatican in Rome.

While the journalistic profession is often hostile to subjects of faith, the pope had nothing but warm words for those assembled, saying in Italian, “I love you so much, and I thank you for all that you have done.”…

…the former Cardinal Jose Mario Bergoglio of Buenos Aires, Argentina, called on the journalists to see a higher purpose in their efforts.

“Your work calls for careful preparation, sensitivity and experience,” he said, “like so many other professions, but it also demands a particular concern for what is true, good and beautiful. This is something we have in common, since the Church exists to communicate precisely this.”

He also explained the origin of his name, Francis, citing Saint Francis’ connection to the poor, his focus on peace – a big change from a young man who once dreamed of glory in battle – and his connection to the natural world.

At times, Pope Francis lifted his eyes from his prepared text and spoke directly and extemporaneously to the journalists, accompanied by hand gestures and animated facial expressions. His personality was particularly evident when he told the story of his name. Smiling and shrugging at the funny parts, he elicited laughter and applause…

…[after the event] One person greeting the pope also brought a yellow Labrador retriever as a service dog, which got a brief greeting and a blessing from the pontiff – whose namesake is the patron saint of animals…

The complete article, with video and English translation of the Pope’s remarks, is at Big Peace.


Related: Video: Pope Francis’ Angelus blessing, plus shots of the crowd  Hot Air’s Ed Morrissey has been in Rome this week. At the end of the article, he wrote about David Gregory’s interview with Cardinal Francis George on Meet the Press:

…To wrap this up, let’s check in with David Gregory on Meet the Press, talking with Cardinal Francis George about Pope Francis.  George tries to emphasize the pastoral focus of the new pontiff, but Gregory’s more interested in talking about American politics — which earns a rebuke from Cardinal George, as The Corner’s Patrick Brennan reports:

When asked about the tension between the Church’s teachings and contemporary attitudes, George emphasized that the pope “simply has to preach the Gospel,” even in a context so secularized that it seems “there is no god and Freud is his prophet.” He lamented that “for the sake of sexual liberation, we’re willing to let a lot of other liberties go.” The cardinal said he was “not sure we realize what’s going on,” but that Pope Francis “will help us to realize it better.” Gregory pushed him about the Church’s role in American politics, but the cardinal rejected that Catholic teachings are easily mapped onto American politics: “The categories you use are conservative and liberal, you’ll be using them today, our categories are what is true and what is false.”

Sounds like the media isn’t moving on from its initial focus in this papal transition.  Too bad.

There’s Ed’s video from Rome and video of David Gregory and Cardinal George at Hot Air.

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