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In the News: New Leadership in the Church

Joined: 4/23/2013
Posts: 1
On Thursday, March 28, 2013, twelve prisoners received a pleasant surprise. This day, also known as Holy or Maundy Thursday, marks the day when Jesus and his disciples shared the Last Supper. Another event, though usually overlooked, took place this day shortly before the meal itself. Jesus, in an act of humility, washed the feet of his twelve apostles. Catholics around the world repeat this practice annually; however, the pope’s guests receive the most attention. This year, the newly elected Pope Francis did something that has never been done before. Two of the twelve people who had their feet washed were women; two were Muslim. This act means much more than what meets the eye. Clearly, it shows that women and people of other faiths will now be included in the ceremony of the washing of the feet. However, to everyone in the world, this should also represent a movement of the church to serving everyone, including the poor and misplaced. This is exactly what the world needs in this time of hatred. Pope Francis said, “I would like a poor Church, for the poor.” This attitude of servitude will continue to trend because of the leadership of the current papacy.
What does this mean for us? People naturally follow the leader. Our current Earthly leader, the pope, just gave an example of humility. Acts of service will be more and more welcomed in the world. The poor will be treated fairly and given more opportunities. Local churches might spend less money on gold and silver décor and focus time and money in a more conscious effort in reaching out to the community. Catholics will increase their effort in helping the poor regardless of personal faith. How can you help? A select number of people frowned upon the pope’s decision to wash the feet of the women. These people claim it to be a “break in canonical law.” Ignore these frivolous claims and act as God intended. The new pope is reaching out to everyone in the world, and we should follow in his footsteps.
With this new leadership, tensions in the Middle East with Muslim countries will begin to deescalate. Pope Francis has been noted by leaders of the Islamic community in Buenos Aires as someone who, “…always showed himself as a friend of the Islamic community.” They also commented that his position is, “Pro-dialogue,” meaning that he is open to speaking with Islamic leadership, and it is clear with the events in Boston that this is necessary.
By paying attention to the acts of the Church, we can bring the world closer together. Simple acts of kindness towards the needy, such as the washing of the feet, can cause a great effect, and in this day and age, that is what we need. With the new pope elected, I believe we have the leadership to achieve that goal.
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