Friday morning, when President Joe Biden has an official audience with Pope Francis, some heads will explode, says NCR political columnist Michael Sean Winters, adding that for a certain kind of Catholic, Biden represents a repudiation of their understanding of their own Catholic identity, and that kind of Catholic tends to be less than enthusiastic about Pope Francis.
Winters explains that it is Biden's stance on abortion that has certain Catholics turning their heads. Biden is clear that he accepts the church's teaching on abortion but doesn't think it right to legislate that teaching for the country. What's more is that Biden is consistently photographed attending Mass and carrying his rosary. But what does this mean when Biden meets Pope Francis at the Vatican on Friday?
"Pope Francis will welcome Joe Biden and treat him the way he seems to treat almost everyone who approaches him, as a human being, with faults and failings as well as with gifts and dignity," Winters says. "The pope does not expect a politician to deliver the eschaton nor does the president expect the pope to resolve all the conundrums that afflict our political life."
Read an explainer from Vatican correspondent Christopher White on what has to happen for a meeting between the pope and the president to take place.
Franciscan Fr. Daniel P. Horan writes about recognizing the miraculous in everyday life. "Why is it only when things seem to occur on an extraordinary scale or during the most-dire situations that we pause to acknowledge the possibility of divine presence at work in our world?"
Scotland's Catholic bishops' conference and dioceses are among 72 faith institutions on six continents that announced their fossil-free commitments Oct. 26, days before the U.N. climate conference begins in Glasgow. Read more at EarthBeat.
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