cover image Francis of Rome & Francis of Assisi: A New Springtime for the Church

Francis of Rome & Francis of Assisi: A New Springtime for the Church

Leonardo Boff. Orbis, $18 trade paper (168p) ISBN 978-1-62698-083-9

There is no shortage of excitement about Pope Francis, but very little critical theological analysis of his ministry in light of the realities of the contemporary Church exists. Boff (Jesus Christ Liberator), professor of ethics at the University of Rio de Janeiro and one of the most credible theological voices in Catholicism, supplies it. The author is filled with optimism about the current pontiff and his ability to make substantial changes in the church. Because Boff is deeply knowledgeable about church history, politics, and doctrine he avoids the naïve analysis that other Francis fans have offered. The shift of power away from Europe to the developing world is a very positive development because it will change how that power is exercised. The poor are a major focus of this papacy, which represents an important return to the roots of Christianity. Pope Francis is carrying out much-needed reforms with a sense of humility in order to win back the hearts of those the church has marginalized for decades. These changes are not window dressing, but a vital part of the program for the liberation of the Catholic Church from corruption and elitism. (Aug.)