Francis Inspires Religious Freedom, But Challenges Within the Church Remain

By: Paul Elie

A few weeks ago, several dozen of us Georgetown faculty members and students met in the large conference room at the Berkley Center and watched Pope Francis’s address to a joint session of Congress. A lively discussion followed, although I was forced to duck in and out to reply to a raft of messages that came in after Francis put forward Dorothy Day and Thomas Merton—protagonists of my first bookThe Life You Save May Be Your Own: An American Pilgrimage—as “representative Americans” in their striving for the common good. 

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Pope Francis and the Power of Ideas

By: Nicholas Fedyk

“How many divisions does the Pope of Rome have?” asked Joseph Stalin in 1944. Criticized for his harsh treatment of Catholic minorities, Stalin’s retort was plain: A lack of military power meant a lack of influence on the world stage. Soldiers, aircraft, tanks, battleships: this was the stuff of power. The Catholic Church wielded great doctrinal and ideological power over its members, but without military might, it was woefully under-equipped to challenge such dogged realpolitik. 

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