Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Michelle Bauman (CNA)

10/7/2013 (10 months ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Denver, Colo., Oct 2, 2013 / 05:01 pm (CNA).- A new book on the Holy Father gathers insights and recollections from 20 people across Argentina who knew Pope Francis as a seminarian, priest and bishop in Buenos Aires.

A new book on Pope Francis provides insights into his life.

A new book on Pope Francis provides insights into his life.

Highlights

By Michelle Bauman (CNA)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

10/7/2013 (10 months ago)

Published in Living Faith

Keywords: Pope Francis, book


"A Pope who is constantly surprising people with his gestures, words and teachings comes from somewhere, has a background," said editor and translator Alejandro Bermudez, "and that's what the book tries to explore."

"Pope Francis: Our Brother, Our Friend" (Ignatius Press) records personal recollections from twenty individuals who personally knew the man who became Pope Francis.

Shortly after Buenos Aires Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio was elected Pope in March, Bermudez - who heads both Catholic News Agency and ACI Prensa, the largest Catholic news provider in Spanish - traveled to Argentina to conduct interviews with those who had personally known the Holy Father.

The result, Bermudez explained, is "the mosaic of a complex, rich personality that can help us understand the concerns, the experiences, the convictions and spiritual motivations behind the decisions and style of Pope Francis."

The book offers memories and reflections through the eyes of 10 Jesuits who lived close to Pope Francis in Argentina - as peers, professors or those receiving spiritual direction from then-Fr. Bergoglio.

These accounts are enriched by the testimony of 10 other individuals who knew the Pope, Bermudez explained, "from a prestigious politician to a lowly beggar, from a rabbi to a priest working in the slums."

Fr. Ángel Rossi, S.J., who was a student of then-Fr. Bergoglio and is now superior of the Residencia Jesuita community in Córdoba, described the Pope as "a very skillful man."

"I say that he is a mix between a desert saint and a brilliant manager, a combination that normally isn't very common," the priest explained in the book.

"He is a man with great intelligence, and also with academic and scholarly intelligence, but above all I think of that special perception which previously the monks used to call the 'cardiognosis': the gift of knowing peoples' hearts."

A 62-year-old beggar in Buenos Aires said that Fr. Bergoglio "cared for me, he cared for us, he knew all of us."

He recounted how Pope Francis, as a priest and later as a bishop and cardinal, would ask for prayers.

"I always liked to greet him because he always gave a smile. He never greeted seriously or in a bad mood," the beggar recalled, adding, "We miss him here."

"He was a person who went from giving spiritual assistance to someone, to speaking on the phone with a bishop or some important person, to washing clothes in the laundry or to the kitchen or where they raised the hogs," said Fr. Fernando Cervera, S.J., whose spiritual advisor was then-Fr. Bergoglio.

He added that the Pope had been very involved with the students in the classroom as well.

José María Poirier, director of the Catholic magazine "Criterio," said that as a cardinal, Pope Francis celebrated Mass for the publication's 80th anniversary and told the staff members to "be on the cultural frontiers, do not expect the intellectuals to come to you; you be the ones going out to meet the non-religious intellectuals, the non-Catholics and non-Christians."

The great "paradox" of Pope Francis, said Poirier, was that despite his tremendous work with the poor of Buenos Aires and his contributions to interreligious dialogue, he consciously chose to keep such a low profile that "he was almost invisible in the eyes of the city."

"Pope Francis: Our Brother, Our Friend" is now available in English from Ignatius Press.


Click here to learn about our Saint Michael the Archangel conference this Nov 1-3!

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


© 2014 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for August 2014
Refugees:
That refugees, forced by violence to abandon their homes, may find a generous welcome and the protection of their rights.
Oceania: That Christians in Oceania may joyfully announce the faith to all the people of that region.



Comments


More Living Faith

Challenging the just war theory

Image of The horrors of war persist long after the shooting stops.

By Tony Magliano

Is there such a thing as a just war? Can the massive death and destruction of armed conflict ever be morally justified by followers of the Prince of Peace? For the first disciples of Christ the answer was a resounding "No!"During the first 300 years of Christianity it ... continue reading


Spiritual Childhood and Contemplative Prayer Watch

Image of

By Deacon Keith A Fournier

One of the greatest joys in this later chapter of my life is an unexpected gift, his name is Noah. He is my grandson. He calls me Poppi. He is seven years old and so very wise. Noah continually confronts me with the utter simplicity, trust, openness and beauty of ... continue reading


How to Avoid Sliding into Pharisee-ism Watch

Image of Christ Before the High Priest, by Gerrit van Honthorst (1590-1656) hangs in the London Museum of Art.  The painting depicts Jesus, standing before the High priest - with His holy hands bound. The Priest, who at the time I thought was a Pharisee, is looking up with an arrogant demeanor and a pointed finger.

By Deacon Keith A Fournier

A priest friend once reminded me that not ALL the Pharisees were so blinded by their self-righteousness that they failed to recognize that the One whom they so often sought to correct was God Incarnate. And, of course, he was correct. The Pharisees were a genuine ... continue reading


What every catechist needs but few have

Image of A complete library of books for catechists should feature the USCCB's full collection.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

If you're a catechist, then you're aware of the importance of your role. You provide the core of Catholic education to our youth and adults who are entering the Church. As such, you are familiar with the teachings of the Church and can probably answer most questions ... continue reading


DEPLORABLE CONDITIONS: Up to 50 Iraqi Christian refugees sleeping in areas the size of bedroom Watch

Image of Mosul, one of the largest cities in Iraq, is now completely empty of Christians as is Qaraqosh, a town dating back to 1,000 years before Christ and inhabited by mostly Christians for 2,000 years.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Mattresses scattered around church altars. Up to 50 people sleeping in areas the size of a single bedroom. Church grounds dotted with makeshift tents in 105-degree heat. This was just a few of the deplorable conditions a delegation sent by Melkite Catholic ... continue reading


Pope Francis briefed by envoy about deteriorating situation in Iraq Watch

Image of Cardinal Filoni spoke to the Pope last week. The cardinal had just arrived at the Vatican following a visit to Iraq on August 13-20 as Francis' envoy to besieged minorities there.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Back from a fact-finding mission on the deteriorating and ever worsening situation in Iraq, Cardinal Fernando Filoni said that Pope Francis "was really taken" by his description of Christians and other minorities who have been forced from their homes in north-western ... continue reading


Will Suffering, Struggle, Failure and Pain Make us Bitter or Better? Watch

Image of Because of his close communion with Jesus Christ, the Risen One who had called him in the desert, Paul cultivated an interior strength which made it possible for him to walk through the pain, to even embrace the pain, and to experience failure itself as a path to the Cross where he found comfort in the wounded side of Jesus the Savior.

By Deacon Keith A Fournier

St. Paul was an extraordinary man and an extraordinary Christian. An Apostle, raised up out of the ordinary course, he accomplished great things for the Lord as he eagerly responded to His calling to build the Church and, through her, to help change the world. A ... continue reading


What Pope Francis said to make millions think again about abortion Watch

Image of On Saturday, August 16, 2014, during the apostolic visit to Korea, Pope Francis made a loud statement. However, he did not use words. He did not have to. His prophetic action brought to mind a saying attributed to his namesake, Francis of Asisi - I preach the Gospel at all times, but sometimes I use words.

By Deacon Keith A Fournier

When Francis began his service from the chair of Peter, much hoopla filled the media about some alleged softening in the opposition of the Catholic Church to what are dismissively referred to as complicated "moral issues" such as abortion. Sadly, even some in the ... continue reading


DEAR CATHOLIC ONLINE: Keep it free, keep it going

Image of Keep it free, keep it live.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online is heavily invested in bringing you world class news delivered from the Catholic perspective. This service is provided for free and we intend for it to remain free for the foreseeable future. However, it comes at a cost and right now, we need each ... continue reading


You Go Into the Vineyard Too! Every Baptized Christian Has a Vocation and Mission Watch

Image of

By Deacon Keith A Fournier

The Church is a seed, sign and beginning of the kingdom, making the kingdom present in a world which is wounded by the effects of sin but waiting to be born anew. The Lord continues His work through us. We are the workers in His vineyard. It matters little what ... continue reading


All Living Faith News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Second Thessalonians 3:6-10, 16-18
6 In the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, we urge you, ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 128:1-2, 4-5
1 [Song of Ascents] How blessed are all who fear ... Read More

Gospel, Matthew 23:27-32
27 'Alas for you, scribes and Pharisees, you ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for August 27th, 2014 Image

St. Monica
August 27: St. Monica was married by arrangement to a pagan official in ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter