I realize I’m a few days late in riding the Pope Frenzy generated by his recent trip to the USA accompanied by wall to wall coverage on CNN (International version at least). But allow me to make one point about this Pope’s popularity.
I think “the world” actually knows what Christians are suppose to be like…what we are suppose to act like. Without taking any theology classes, people in general know that we are supposed to be characterized by love, joy, humility, peace, care for the poor and marginalized, etc. When they see that in us they recognized it. Without a lot of processing, they know it when they see it. That’s why other similar Christians such as Martin Luther King, Jr, Mother Theresa, Jean Vanier, Henri Nouwen, etc. have enjoyed a good amount of popularity in their time.
I think they’ve simply had the audacity to live like Jesus in the world, what we’ve all been called to do. So let’s do it. People might actually like it!