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Pope Francis says fan magazine is too much

A newsstand vendor holds the new Italian magazine

A newsstand vendor holds the new Italian magazine Il Mio Papa published by Mondadori in Rome on March 7, 2014. Credit: Getty Images / Alberto Pizzoli

Il Mio Papa!

That isn't only the name of the new Oprah-style magazine being published in Italy. "My pope" is also what flocks of modern Catholics around the globe are shouting in a burst of many languages as they adjust themselves to a pope they actually agree with.

One year in, Francis still seems to be that man.

The new fan mag was too much for the humble pontiff. "To depict the pope as a kind of superman or a star seems to me offensive," he declared. Clearly, he's still trying to get his head around the power of his own celebrity and the unexpectedly warm welcome that he's received. It's been so long since a new pope has been greeted like this, no one knows what could be achieved if the people and the pope all push the same way.

Women and married priests. Fresh looks at divorce and birth control. A strip-down of the institution's grandiosity. A franker response to various scandals. A more forceful approach to war, poverty, abuse and discrimination.

For now, Pope Francis is only given partial hints of his next-phase agenda. "Women must have a greater presence in the decision-making areas," he says. On contraception, the church must consider "that which it is possible for people to do."

In his first 12 months, Francis has surveyed the Catholic landscape, inspired the faithful and assessed what might be achieved. Year two will be his chance to try for actual policy changes.

Il Mio Papa!





1. Holy Father

2. Bishop of Rome

3. Pontiff

4. Your Holiness

5. Pretty Cool Guy for a Pope

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