A shepherd clearly steering the flock08 December 2016 | by Christopher Lamb | Comments: 0 A milestone birthday is approaching for Pope Francis. The focus of his pontificate has been that other milestone – the Second Vatican Council – and implementing its key principles
When Pope Francis celebrates his 80th birthday next Saturday it will be a moment to reflect on his action-packed journey of a papacy, so often defined by his personal charisma and spontaneous gestures.
But his leadership of the Church is far more than just about him: it is a papacy that continues the legacy of the Second Vatican Council, contemporary Catholicism’s defining moment.
That event, which concluded just over 50 years ago, set the Church on a path of reform and unprecedented engagement with the modern world; one where condemnation was replaced with listening and where those who fall short of church teaching are offered the “medicine of mercy”.