I just love the story about Pope Francis calling up a Traditional Catholic writer who had criticized him.
“Pope Francis told me that he was very close to me, having learned of my health condition, of my grave illness, and I clearly noticed his deep empathy, the attention for a person as such, beyond ideas and opinions, while I live through a time of trial and suffering.”
“I was astonished, amazed, above all moved: for me, as a Catholic, that which I was experiencing was one of the most beautiful experiences in my life. But I felt the duty to remind the Pope that I, together wih Gnocchi, had expressed specific criticisms regarding his work, while I renewed my total fidelity [to him] as a son of the Church. The Pope almost did not let me finish the sentence, saying that he had understood that those criticisms had been made with love, and how important it had been for him to receive them.” [These words] “comforted me greatly.”
One thing about Pope Francis is that he is not a “Pope in a bubble” someone isolated from news and criticism. His humility really rings through here and inspires me. We have a culture now with a propensity towards thin skins. A prideful self-image must be defended at all costs. Self-esteem is more important than the self-awareness humility requires.
This is a Pope I believe who is willing to reevaluate and make changes as necessary. As evidence of this is that the Pope reportedly had “regretted” that the interview with Eugenio Scalfari being published in L’Osservatore Romano. The interview that Scalfari has not taped or even taken notes for.
Pope Francis’ recent interview with Eugenio Scalfari, the atheist founder of the Italian daily La Repubblica, has been removed from the Vatican website, Vatican spokesman Fr. Federico Lombardi confirmed today. (source)