Pope on interviews: Church must listen, respond to people’s questions.
October 17, 2017
#PopeFrancis is famous for giving interviews, and he says he prefers small, neighborhood newspapers and magazines. “In fact, in those cases I really am listening to the questions and concerns of common people.
I try to respond spontaneously, in a conversation I hope is understandable, and not with rigid formulas,” he said. A new book collecting his interviews is coming out this week in Italian.
Replying to questions and giving interviews are a “pastoral risk” Pope Francis said he is prepared to take, because it is the best way to know and respond to people’s real concerns.
“I know this can make me vulnerable, but it is a risk I want to take,” the pope wrote in the introduction to a new #book collecting transcripts of question-and-answer sessions he has held all over the world.
The collection in Italian, “Adesso Fate le Vostre Domande” (“Now, Ask Your Questions”), was edited by Jesuit Father Antonio Spadaro and scheduled for release Oct. 19. The pope’s introduction was published Oct. 17 in the Italian newspaper La Repubblica. “I want a church that knows how to enter into people’s conversations, that knows how to dialogue,” Francis wrote.
The model is the Gospel account of the risen Lord’s meeting with the disciples on the road to Emmaus. “The Lord ‘interviews’ the disciples who are walking discouraged,” he said. “For me, the interview is part of this conversation the church is having with men and women today.” The interviews and Q&A sessions “always have a pastoral value,” Francis said, and are an important part of his ministry, just like inviting a small group of people to his early morning Mass each day.
The chapel of the Domus Sanctae Marthae, where he lives, “is, let’s say, my parish. I need that communication with people.”
And, in interviews, the journalists often ask the questions that are on the minds of the faithful, he said.
#Photo: Paul Haring/CNS
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