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Pope For Tomorrow

When Pope Benedict XVI unexpectedly resigned for health reasons, few could have predicted that his predecessor would so quickly move to change the perception of the Roman Catholic Church. Here’s a look at some of Pope Francis’ most radical moves to date.

1. Chose to take the name of Saint Francis of Assisi because of his dedication to the poor.

2. Following his election to the papacy, he paid his own hotel bill, personally thanked staff and took a bus, instead of the popemobile, back to the Vatican residence with his fellow cardinals.

3. Elected to live in a guesthouse instead of the Apostolic Palace that typically houses the pope.

4. Conducted a Holy Week Mass not from St. Peter’s Basilica, as tradition dictates, but from a youth prison. There, he washed the feet of a group of 12 young inmates of various religions.

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5. Canceled the bonuses that generally go to cardinals, instead donating that money to charity.

6. Established a revolutionary advisory board to help usher in major church reforms—including overhauling the notoriously corrupt Vatican Bank and taking decisive action against priests who
abuse children.

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