As Vatican reporter John Thavis points out, this week marks a “curious milestone” for Pope Francis as he surpasses the 34 days in office that was the tenure of Pope John Paul I before his surprising death in 1978, making way for the remarkable Pope John Paul II.
Elected presumably as a reformer, there is no doubt that Pope Francis has plenty of stumbling stones to watch out for on the lonely road ahead. Financial scandals at the Vatican, continuing scrutiny of sexual misconduct in priesthoods around the world and constant rumors of corruption back in Rome make for a heavy cross to bear on a journey that – one can only hope – leads beyond the necessary, but painful introspection.
As we look forward to the road ahead for Pope Francis, we must pray that he is a capable and enduring reformer, one who can set the sights of the catholic church on the higher and most important goals of peace, compassion and humanity for all people on God’s green earth. That is the Church that many people are praying for.
So with Pope Francis now more than a month in office, I pray that he continue on a humble and righteous path that never loses sight of the ambitious long term objectives.