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Pope Francis Named Time’s Person of the Year

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Pope Francis Named Time’s Person of the Year

Every year Time magazine designates a “Person of the Year” — someone who has impacted the world and the news over the last 12 months.This year, that iconic title was given to Pope Francis.

I am not Catholic, but I adore Pope Francis. I love the way his face lights up with his heartfelt smile, the way his eyes twinkle, and the way he demonstrates to the world what it means to be a Christian in the truest sense of the word. He is humble. He is unpretentious. He is loving. He is compassionate. He cares deeply about the downtrodden, the forgotten and the poor.

However, most importantly maybe, is his willingness to not only provide comfort for the downtrodden, the forgotten and the poor, but to also challenge the very economic system that creates these categories.

Pope Francis recently authored a 50,000 word paper criticizing the global economic system, confronting the “idolatry of money” and beseeching politicians to guarantee all citizens “dignified work, education and healthcare.”

He also called upon rich people to share their wealth: “Just as the commandment ‘Thou shalt not kill’ sets a clear limit in order to safeguard the value of human life, today we also have to say ‘thou shalt not’ to an economy of exclusion and inequality. Such an economy kills,” Francis wrote in the document issued last month.

He solemnly asks, “How can it be that it is not a news item when an elderly homeless person dies of exposure, but it is news when the stock market loses 2 points?”

“As long as the problems of the poor are not radically resolved by rejecting the absolute autonomy of markets and financial speculation and by attacking the structural causes of inequality, no solution will be found for the world’s problems or, for that matter, to any problems,” he wrote.

Denying this was populism, he called for action “beyond a simple welfare mentality” and added: “I beg the Lord to grant us more politicians who are genuinely disturbed by the state of society, the people, the lives of the poor.”

This man is my hero. Not only is he a divine example of compassion, grace, joy and intelligence, he is finally saying what has been needed to be said by a powerful world leader for a long, long time — that the current economic system is failing the large majority of the world’s people and that greed is not godly. I just hope the world’s Catholics and others take heed and we can collectively alter our course to a more equitable future where we ALL flourish all people and all life.

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Next page: Video of Pope interacting with Child

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Cherise Udell

Cherise Udell is a mom, clean air advocate, anthropologist and feline aficionado with the nomadic habit of taking spontaneous sojourns to unusual destinations. Before her adventures in motherhood, she was an intrepid Amazon jungle guide equipped with a pair of sturdy wellingtons and a 24-inch machete, as well as a volunteer at a rainforest animal rescue center.

159 comments

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4:45AM PDT on Mar 10, 2014

Love this guy

5:39AM PST on Feb 23, 2014

Though I'm not a Catholic I certainly admire this pope as a wonderful example.

10:10AM PST on Jan 1, 2014

The more I hear the more I find him deserving of this honor

2:15AM PST on Dec 31, 2013

Cool Post

11:04AM PST on Dec 29, 2013

He is a truly good man. Very rare.

6:04PM PST on Dec 23, 2013

He has surprised and impressed me, certainly. He gets a cautious thumbs up from me.

7:19PM PST on Dec 22, 2013

Cool post!

6:53PM PST on Dec 21, 2013

Pope Francis is, without a doubt, a breath of fresh air.

10:53AM PST on Dec 21, 2013

thank you

1:06PM PST on Dec 20, 2013

what a guy! :D

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.

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