The Pope and Archbishop MoxonThe most iconic moral authority today 

What is so special about Popes Francis’ first anniversary. Like many others I find in Pope Francis a powerful and unmistakable witness to down to earth holiness and creative justice seeking  in the world today. He has quickly become the most iconic moral authority in the world today, Why?

Because he represents in himself the cumulative wisdom and experience of a Franciscan and Jesuit Christian. This combination means you get expressions of the radical simplicity and compassion of Francis of Assisi, together with the deep interior honesty and justice seeking of Ignatius. This is what we need as a guide to Christian living in a superficial, hedonist and information technology driven world. The pope challenges us to move out of our sanctuaries and our computer bordered worlds, into our deepest true self, and from there into the streets of common compassion, solidarity with the poorest of the poor :  there to re discover our true humanity in Christ.

So this is no popularity pope, this is deep witness from the heart of the Gospel; this witness connects with so many because we are all made in the image of God, however marred or soiled that image may be, and the  image within us from our own creation, recognises the spirit of Christ in Pope Francis. This is not a human achievement, but a work of the Holy Spirit in the church and in the world.

This work of the Spirit is worth celebrating in this first anniversary of a Pope named Francis,  shaped by the best of the Ignatian heritage. We wish him many years.

David Moxon, 13/03/2014