Even before the conclave met, it was his new favorite book.
You can’t make this stuff up.
From the messy piles of paperbacks strewn across every room of our house, a few children’s books have squirreled their way onto my own bookshelves. Now every day my oldest boy bursts through the doors of my office, demanding to read the Francis book.
So we do. He curls in my lap, and I turn the pages. We both agree our favorites are the pages bursting with birds whose colorful chorus sings with the saint:
Some say papal-mania is settling down. But I still see a steady stream of striking articles and thoughtful reflections written about the new leader. Sunday morning I sat down with a cup of tea and two rowdy boys to read this piece in praise of a “slum pope” and this subtle, surprising report of journalists being blessed by a pontiff, regardless of what beliefs they held.
Now every time I sit with my son and read a Song of Francis, I think more deeply about what it means to be a servant leader. A heart for justice, a desire for peace, a vision for those on the margins.
No matter what profession my boy chooses, no matter what callings whisper in his ear, I hope he will become this kind of man. The kind of compassionate, caring person whose life is known by humility and hope.
The power of hope lifts me up this Lent. Another Easter is almost on the horizon, and already I see signs of resurrection. For a Church who knows darkness, the Spirit reminds us of light. For a world scarred by scandal, the Spirit reminds us of life after death. For a people polarized, the Spirit reminds us to turn together towards the poor.
No man is perfect. Not a pope, not a preschooler. But what can bend us slowly towards better is love, perfect love that casts out fear. I feel that today among so many Catholics I know. The power of hope.
The gift of Easter. The song of Francis.