As Pope Francis is today in the afternoon of his first full day on US soil, the US media is flooded with commentaries on the couple of speeches he has given so far (Whitehouse and US Bishops) It is evident that Francis has a style of his own, and while his emphasis on the creation of a culture of dialogue and encounter is generally welcomed, some of his other reflections are conveniently overlooked by those who report his words.
This morning as I write, Pope Francis is making the short journey from the Apostolic Nunciature where he is staying to the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington DC where he will soon celebrate Mass with the canonisation of Junipero Serra who was a Spanish-born founder of many of the great Californian missions. (this is why so many of the main Californian cities are names for saints eg San Francisco, San Diego, Los Angeles etc). You can watch this live online at this link, or on one of the US TV channels.
One of the most sound and authoritative biographies of Pope Francis has been written by a London-based Catholic journalist Austen Ivereigh. His biography of the pope The Great Reformer is a sound and readable insight into the life and passions of Pope Francis. In this brief (5 minute) video interview the author gives a helpful insight into Pope Francis’ understanding of true reform in the church.