By Mark Abrams
PHILADELPHIA (CBS)–Only on the job for a few months, Pope Francis caused quite a controversy in a recently published interview that circulated worldwide through a Jesuit magazine.
Bill Madges, a Theology professor in the Religious Studies department at St. Joseph’s University, says many mainstream media accounts and Catholics took what Pope Francis said out of context and failed to recognize his pastoral style of management is quite different from his predecessors.
“Whether people understand themselves to be conservative, middle of the road or progressive, recognize that as head of the Catholic Church which has more than a billion members and is worldwide that there is tremendous diversity in the church.”
Madges says the pope will unlikely be in a hurry to relax the Church’s doctrines on abortion, homosexuality or gay marriage.
However, he sees Pope Francis reaching out to heal those broken in body and spirit and look to the Church to welcome, rather than condemn, the sinner.