Pope Francis's inaugural visit to the United States comes at a time when a majority of Americans hold the pontiff in high favor.
That may be in part due to the Holy Father's recent comments on homosexuality, women in the church, climate change and the importance of being humble.
The Pope said: "... if a homosexual person is of good will and is in search of God, I am no one to judge. By saying this, I said what the catechism says. Religion has the right to express its opinion in the service of the people, but God in creation has set us free: it is not possible to interfere spiritually in the life of a person." (Source: AmericanMagazine.org )
On women in the church (this, ahem, blew us away):
The Pope said: "Women must have a greater presence in the decision-making areas of the church," he said. "But I would call this a 'functional' promotion. That won't take us very far." (Source: The Wall Street Journal )
On Climate Change:
The Pope said: "The Earth, our home, is beginning to look more and more like an immense pile of filth," Francis said. "In many parts of the planet, the elderly lament that once beautiful landscapes are now covered with rubbish." (via CNN ) Read, in full, the Pope's stance on climate change .
On being humble:
The Pope said: "Be close to the people and live as you preach. Always be with your flock, do not succumb to careerism and ask yourselves whether you are truly living as you preach," Pope Francis said at odds with certain church leaders' lavish lifestyles. (h/t Spiegel Online International )