With the understanding that this post may end up being a bit controversial to some, I was inspired by the Pope’s trip to the United States to express my feelings.
I was raised Catholic. I was an Alter Girl for nearly ten years and when I received the Rite for the first time, I took the Confirmation name Michelle after the Archangel St. Michael. Today, I do not consider myself a Catholic per se: I consider myself Agnostic if asked, though I do not put a label on it and see no need to do so.
That being said, I do not agree with some of the Catholic Church’s decisions and stances on some modern issues, but I believe in Pope Francis. When I was born, the reigning pontiff was John Paul II, and I remember people talking about him with great respect and enthusiasm. He was even beautified in 2011 and canonized in 2014. I see people hold perhaps an even higher regard for Pope Francis today. The 78-year-old pontiff is definitely doing his best to reshape the Church, and this is being taken in several ways by may people, though the general reaction is one of celebration and pride.
Sometimes all it takes is one person to make a difference in the world, and I believe Pope Francis to be just such a person. He is certainly not like other Popes we have had in the last century and possibly even later. He lives with other priests in a humble home in Vatican City as opposed to the grandeur of the Papal Apartments. He has asked other priests and nuns to drive “humble cars” and himself rides in a simple Ford Focus. He is certainly a humble man and a compassionate individual.
I con honestly say that I have the utmost respect for Pope Francis. I believe with all my heart that this man is capable of great things, of perhaps changing the world for the better in a time when the world needs such. Perhaps even one day he will be canonized himself, but for now, I look forward to seeing where this man will lead the Church and the Catholic community as a whole.