Pope Francis: A True Leader and Inspiration
Posted by Larry Doyle on June 24, 2014 7:20 AM |
Given the many challenges facing us these days, our nation and world badly need real leaders.
How do I define a leader? An individual who puts the interests of others ahead of his own, does what is right with no regard for how it will impact him/her personally, and speaks up in forceful fashion when it is far more convenient and conducive to sit down or speak purely in political terms.
If we were to hold the bar at an appropriately elevated level, who in America and the world truly define what it is to be a leader? We can come up with some selected individuals perhaps, but by my standards we have a serious lack of true leaders both nationally and globally at this point in time. Fortunately, we can look to Pope Francis if we care to envision a real leader.
Pope Francis has exemplified real leadership numerous times during his papacy but perhaps no single display of true leadership stands out more than his talk the other day in Calabria when he defined the local mafiosi as “adorers of evil.”
In his homily at the Saturday evening Mass during his day trip to Italy’s Calabria region, Pope Francis denounced the dishonesty and violence perpetrated by members of the local mafia.
“When adoration of the Lord is substituted by adoration of money, the road to sin opens to personal interest … When one does not adore the Lord, one becomes an adorer of evil, like those who live by dishonesty and violence,” Pope Francis said June 21 at the outdoor Mass in Sibari, Italy.
“Your land, which so beautiful, knows the signs of the consequences of this sin. The ‘Ndrangheta (Calabrian mafia) is this: adoration of evil and contempt of the common good. This evil must be fought, must be expelled. It must be told no,” he urged.
Those who have chosen the “evil road, such as the mobsters” are “not in communion with God. They are ‘excommunicated’,” he said.
Students of the papacy have proclaimed that Pope Francis was not only directing his words to those engaged in organized crime but also those within the church who have provided cover and comfort to this criminal element.
Is America listening to Pope Francis? We certainly have our own organized legal and illegal corrupt elements deeply embedded within our financial and political systems.
Additionally, many observers have already hinted that Pope Francis is putting himself at personal risk for speaking out so forcefully against the mob. He rises above this concern and seems to dismiss it without a care.
Francis’ homily deserves much greater attention. As with all his words of wisdom, I think we would be wise to incorporate them into our own lives. He provides real inspiration. Some might decry my message and direction here as crossing the line of political correctness. Isn’t that part of the problem right there?
Let’s ponder Francis’ message and then embrace him and his vision. If we are to advance as a land, we need people to stand up, speak out, and embrace the virtues embodied by Francis over that which we have come to define as our social norms but which strike me as real moral decay.
Look no further than his calling out the mob in their own backyard if you need further evidence of what leadership really looks and sounds like.
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