Winnie Anne Wright
December 25, 2013
Tallahassee, FL - Nine months into his Papacy, Pope Francis held his first Christmas Celebration in front of a record, 150,000 attendees in St. Peter's Square. He preached a messages of peace, especially in war-torn countries.
"I think he's setting a very good precedent for the next popes", says Marco Vintimilla, a Member of Good Shepherd Catholic Church.
All this, after a CNN/ORC International Poll released on Tuesday that found that 88% of american catholics approve of how Francis is handling his role as head of the 1.2 billion-member church.
"Approval ratings versus doing a good job are not different. I think he's doing what he has to do in the sense that he's making the church more open. And, in doing so, he has gotten more people along his side. So, in that way, he's doing two jobs at the same time", says Vintimilla.
Francis, who is from Argentina, is the first Pope from the Americas. Though he has been criticized for being too liberal, Father Foley of Good Shepherd Catholic Church says the teachings haven't changed, only the way that they're delivered.
"I think he's doing a wonderful job. He's kind of a breath of fresh air maybe for the church. Especially coming from the Americas, his experience in Argentina and in Buenos Aires brings a new perspective, and certainly he's focused on the homeless, those who are in great need, which is part of the church's tradition, part of our outreach. I think he's given a new emphasis to that."
Other members of the church say it isn't about whether or not Pope Francis is liberal or conservative, it's only about the importance of spreading the faith.
"I guess as Catholics we just feel like its a global community. It's like the Catholic Church is united. I'm sure it's a great honor for Argentinians especially in the Americas", says Jennifer Wilmot, a Member of Good Shepherd Catholic Church.
Pope Francis also has something else to celebrate, according to CNN, he was the most talked about person of 2013.