There is great hope for the Pope named Francis. Hope that he can clean up the Vatican and refocus the church so that it stops throwing itself into the middle of divisive issues and instead follows the teachings of Christ in preaching peace and love.
The Church has spent the last few decades concentrating on sexual issues, gay marriage, abortion, birth control and stem cell research, the most controversial issues of the day. And since a sex abuse scandal has run parallel in time to this focus, it has looked hypocritical.
The Church needs to return to the teachings of Christ and concern itself with peace and love, with fighting poverty, violence and oppression. That is not to say that the Church need lose its moral compass, it just needs to refocus.
It seems this vatican outsider, a pastor who is comfortable with the masses, with a quick wit and an easy smile, is perfect for the job.
He chose the name Francis, after my favorite saint. I hope he follows the advice of Francis who said “Preach the gospel, when necessary, use words.”