Pope Francis continues his drive to connect with people of all religions across the globe. After completing his treatise on the environment in 2015, entitled Laudato Si’, hailed by the New York Review of Books as “nothing less than a sweeping, radical, and highly persuasive critique of how we inhabit this planet,” the Pope has now turned his attention to a younger audience.
His new book is called Dear Pope Francis: The Pope Answers Letters from Children Around the World, and comprises 30 letters from children all over the world on a range of topics – some profound, others more frivolous. The letters are “hand-written”, accompanied by beautiful illustrations.
The enterprise was organised by Catholic publisher Loyola Press, who invited children to pen a question to the pontiff.
In the book, the Pope confesses to eight-year-old Wing in China that his favourite sport is soccer and one of his hobbies is tango dancing. In a more theological frame of mind, he describes to Alejandra, nine, of Peru, that the devil “is like a dog that is tied up and barks and growls. But if you don’t get close to him, he can’t bite you.”
A particularly touching missive came from William, seven, in Chicago in the US, who asked the Pope, “If you could do one miracle, what would it be?” The simple response was that he would heal all children – a response that set the tone for the book: a chance for the Pope to address a vast spectrum of topics including poverty, mortality and suffering in a straightforward manner.
This book, say publishers, will confirm the Pope’s status as Most Relatable Pope Ever.
Category: Winter 2016