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Pope Francis

The inside of a Catholic Church sits empty.
Wikimedia Commons

The Catholic Church has been under public scrutiny since 2002, when the Boston Globe published stories showing how leadership covered up a series of sexual abuse cases. Almost two decades have passed, but the church hasn’t been able to shake its tarnished reputation.

Wikimedia Commons

The Saint Leo University Polling Institute recently released a survey conducted in early August asking for opinions on a wide range of topics regarding the Catholic Church and social issues.

One topic that stood out was how Pope Francis and the Catholic Church has handled cases of sexual abuse.

Pope Francis speaks his mind, and he did that again in his address to a joint meeting of Congress on Thursday morning. But, in the vein of the best Jesuit teachers, Francis praised America, its rich political history and its ideals before delicately delivering some things its political leaders might, well, want to consider working on.

There were political messages that challenged the orthodoxy of both American political parties, but, in this 51-minute address, there were a lot more points of emphasis Democrats are happy about — and that put some pressure on Republicans.

Tony Gentile / Associated Press

When Sister Anne Dougherty of the Franciscan Center in Tampa received a call from Congresswoman Kathy Castor inviting her to see Pope Francis in Washington DC, she almost had to pinch herself. She thought she was dreaming. 

Pope Francis arrives in Washington, D.C., this afternoon for his first trip to the U.S. Here's a look at some of the key moments to watch during the leader of the Roman Catholic Church's six-day visit.

Tuesday: The President Greets The Pope

Pope Francis has won wide acclaim in the United States for his compassionate approach to thorny problems and his warm embrace of the poor and struggling. But that doesn’t mean that he’s fully in sync with the American Catholic Church.

Many American bishops are much more conservative than this pope, and many lay members don’t share Francis’ concern with climate change and the plight of migrants.

AP Photo/Alex Castro

Pope Francis marked a personal anniversary Monday — the day he decided as a teenager to become a priest — by traveling to the Cuban city of Holguin, emphasizing his papacy's focus on preaching the faith in places far from the international spotlight.

Francis celebrated Mass in the main plaza of Holguin, becoming the first pope to visit Cuba's third-largest city. Later, he was to head to Santiago on Cuba's eastern end before flying to Washington on Tuesday for the U.S. leg of his two-nation trip to the former Cold War foes.

Yoselis Ramos / WUSF

The sun shone like a beacon through the windows of the St. Andrew United Church of Christ in Sarasota. It started off like a regular Catholic mass but instead of men wearing the deacon slashes as they walked down the aisle it was women.

New Media Helps 'Person of the Year' Survive

Dec 18, 2013
time.com

It's a year-end tradition that appears to not only be surviving -- but thriving in the new media

environment.

It's Time magazine's  "Person Of The Year."

This year's Person of the Year is Pope Francis, with NSA leaker Edward Snowden reportedly coming in second.

Saint Leo University Forms a Unique Polling Institute

Dec 11, 2013
en.wikipedia.org

Saint Leo University has formed a polling institute, the first of its kind for the state of Florida.

The institute will address both state and national issues.

The Executive Director of the institute, Drew Gold says polls will include topics such as Hillary Clinton's approval rating among Democrats, as well as other seasonal topics.