Francis on the cover: Pope of Rolling Stone, too
MANILA, Philippines – What does it mean when the Pope – who challenges his flock “to go forth to everyone without exception” – lands on the cover of Rolling Stone?
Cool would be an understatement. Pope Francis, after all, joins the likes of Paul McCartney, Justin Bieber, Britney Spears, and Katy Perry in lending a face to a leading magazine on popular culture.
Explaining its cover story, Rolling Stone says its contributing editor, Mark Binelli, learned “that Pope Francis is making a noticeable break from Vatican tradition, facing political issues head on and presenting a more all-inclusive attitude toward human rights – and that Catholics are appreciative.” (READ: New Year's resolutions: The Pope Francis list)
The magazine says: “Through quotations from Vatican experts and an engaging biography that shows how the Pope struggled through dark times to emerge as the frontrunner for papacy, Rolling Stone presents the Pope as a man tied to religious tradition on one hand and fighting to bring the church into a new era with the other. As the cover suggests, 'The times, they are a-changin.'”
While it shows he is grabbing the world's attention, it more importantly means the Pope is slowly achieving his mission.
Since the conclave that elected him pope, Jorge Mario Bergoglio has hardly changed his tone.
Then the archbishop of Buenos Aires, Bergoglio challenged his fellow cardinals to reach out to all.
He said before the conclave: “Evangelizing pre-supposes a desire in the Church to come out of herself. The Church is called to come out of herself and to go to the peripheries, not only geographically, but also the existential peripheries: the mystery of sin, of pain, of injustice, of ignorance and indifference to religion, of intellectual currents, and of all misery.”
He has repeated this message in his homilies and speeches and, most especially, in the first major papal document that he wrote on his own.
In his apostolic exhortation, "Evangelii Gaudium (The Joy of the Gospel)," he says believers should do their best “to go forth and seek out those who are distant or the immense multitudes who thirst for Christ.”
“Each Christian and every community must discern the path that the Lord points out, but all of us are asked to obey his call to go forth from our own comfort zone in order to reach all the 'peripheries' in need of the light of the Gospel,” the 77-year-old Francis says.
He adds: “In fidelity to the example of the Master, it is vitally important for the Church today to go forth and preach the Gospel to all: to all places, on all occasions, without hesitation, reluctance, or fear. The joy of the Gospel is for all people: no one can be excluded.”
While Time magazine named him Person of the Year, Rolling Stone calls him the “people's pope.” The man who wants to “go forth” is now the Pope of Rolling Stone, too. – Rappler.com