David Warden

January 8, 2022

Father Diego Fares, SJ does a masterful job of explaining both the essence and genesis of the world view of Pope Francis, without falling into the politicized black holes that attracted so many of America’s TV “talking heads” during the Pope’s recent visit to the USA.  As Father Fares reveals, the Pope’s message of striving for authentic encounters with others as a fundamental practice of our faith is not a new theme, but one honed from his early days of formation as a Jesuit priest dedicated to helping the poor and marginalized as a true path to a better world.  But even 25 years ago, as the newly minted Auxiliary Bishop Bergoglio cautioned that one needs more than a mere charitable gesture: “If I simply toss him some coins … if I have not actually touched him, I have not encountered him.” And long before his words as Pope would take on instant global acclaim, in 1977, then Father Jorge Bergoglio told his Jesuit brothers: “By walking patiently and humbly with the poor, we will discover how we may help them, after first having welcomed them.  Without this slow, patient walk alongside them, any action we might take on behalf of the poor and oppressed is contrary to our intention and instead we will impede them from fully feeling their own aspirations and from acquiring those tools they need to effectively assume responsibility for their own and collective destiny.”

And there is much more — all succinctly captured by Father Fares in this short, very readable edition.

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