I was having a conversation with my neighbors at our recent Christmas block party. Many are non-believers or of other faiths. The topic was Pope Francis.
Of course they love him, not as the Vicar of Christ, but as a Pop Culture Uncle. As a reader on this site and of Catholic media, I thanked them for this admiration. I also explained that the Pope is still Catholic: against abortion, contraception, SSM, etc. That took a little wind out of their sails. They still said that I had to be wrong because Francis “talks a better game than the old guy” and approves of same sex marriage. What about :who am I to judge?"
I tried to keep it simple and gave some fact based explanations. Then they took a different approach and decided to say how much better Francis is than his predecessor: the guy that “kept the chair warm” for Francis.
Could you offer some thoughts on Benedict’s accomplishments, successes, etc both within the Church and the secular world. This would be helpful for our next “beer” session.