TIME and Pope Francis – POY

So, Pope Francis is TIME magazine’s Person of the Year.

That’s about all I have to say about that, given the other names on that list.


If being Person of the Year is about the impact the person made, could it be argued that Benedict XVI made an even greater impact by resigning and then opening the way to the election of Francis?

Furthermore, POY from liberal TIME will make it harder for liberals to turn on Francis, as they surely will down the line.  The TIME thing doesn’t mean a lot, but it does enhance his creds among a certain group who still think TIME counts.

Remember, liberal catholics are going to be in a real bind when they figure out that Francis is not going to play ball for their team.  We see a fracture of unity on the left even now.  That fracture will grow.

Meanwhile, former-Father Greg Reynolds is still excommunicated.


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  1. StJude says:

    One of my favorite people on twitter tweeted this:

    Grandpa Ed ?@Nicaea1
    “There are some who like Pope Francis because they misunderstand him and there are some who dislike him for the same reason.”

    I dont have any respect for TIME magazine. When the Pope and Miley Cyrus are even in a competition for the POY… they arent a serious news magazine.

    Good for the Pope though. Who knows.. maybe some poor soul will wonder about him because of this…start reading about what a Catholic believes… and it will lead that person to Jesus. God works in mysterious ways.

  2. Eliane says:

    With Stalin, Hitler and Kissinger on the list, at least this year’s “honoree” is not a mass murderer and destroyer of civilizations. Still, the selection should be taken as a rebuke, not an honor. Time magazine is no friend of the Catholic Church.

  3. Dr. Edward Peters says:

    PpF, POY? Meh.

  4. Fr AJ says:

    I think this is a great thing, the Church has suffered so much from media attacks that it’s nice to see something positive.

  5. anna 6 says:

    I had a similar thought about this…that Benedict XVI’s dramatic resignation has had a much greater, long term impact on the papacy (and thus, the world) than Pope Francis’ very young pontificate could possibly have.

    And it’s not just because I miss the dear man.

  6. James C says:

    I won’t forget Time’s evil, defamatory cover on the last pope 3 years ago:

    A young American priest once asked Cardinal Ratzinger about an awful attack he received in the press. He responded, “If I don’t read an article like that every week or so, I have to examine my conscience.”


  7. mamajen says:

    I’ll take it.

    Yeah, they chose him for the wrong reasons, but hopefully the exposure will spark an interest in people who otherwise might not have cared. I 100% trust that Pope Francis is not secretly a liberal/modernist/whatever out to destroy the Church.

    …could it be argued that Benedict XVI made an even greater impact by resigning and then opening the way to the election of Francis?

    Why, yes:


  8. majuscule says:

    And see what Time did on their “opinion poll” where they removed a few words from the blurb they first presented about a pope Francis.


    It originally stated “The first Jesuit Pontiff won hearts and headlines with his common touch and rejection of church dogma and luxury.”

    They removed the part about rejection of church dogma but good old browser caches and the Wayback Machine caught them!

  9. benedetta says:

    N.B. It is not uncommon for people to bring a lot of preconceived notions or errors, American style politics, flawed or absent catechesis, secular fundamentalist formation to a process of conversion or reversion in the Faith. Much of the time that all gets stripped away gradually through the process of coming to know the Truth and making a response to the encounter with Him. When people set up all sorts of dissenting preconditions to communion and insist that the Church MUST do this or that lest they not feel relevant or empowered, or they continue in error nonetheless, and then attempt to organize and teach others around their dissent, it is very problematic. We should be encouraged that those who have not had the opportunity to know the Faith might become curious to look into it with all the media hype. Thanks to Pope Benedict and the JPII Generation, the Church and her leadership is in a better place in the U.S., and if some are somehow emboldened to “occupy” the Church based on error or anti-Catholic notions, we are much better equipped to deal with that compared to the 70s vanguard when those who styled themselves people who could usher in lots of things foreign to the Gospel were given carte blanche.

  10. Nancy D. says:

    Father, with all due respect, according to the book, On Heaven and Earth, on page 116-117, pope Francis condones same-sex sexual relationships as long as they are “private”, do not include children, and are not called marriage.


    [First, I am not sure what this has to do with the entry, but “condones”? Please quote the book, the Pope’s words, exactly. Thanks.]

  11. wmeyer says:

    I’m not sure that Time’s endorsement is a good thing. Sort of like getting a Nobel prize these days.

  12. McCall1981 says:

    That little moment when this secular magizine wrote that Francis was rejecting Church dogma, then erased it, has a lot of symbolic value. It’s like a summary of his whole pontificate.

  13. iPadre says:

    They love what they think the Pope is and stands for. But, when they realize he is not, the attack will be extremely vicious. We must pray much for the Holy Father and for the Church.

  14. Priam1184 says:

    Eh, I get concerned for the Vicar of Christ when he receives too much applause from the world out there, but what are we to do except pray for Francis every morning and evening? I cannot see how his papacy, short of a divine miracle, will end up being anything else but very tragic. I completely agree with your comment about Benedict XVI though: Francis’ effect on the world has been entirely based on a manufactured image that it is my suspicion that he had no intention of creating whereas BXVI actually did something, and that something is the thing that brought Francis to the world’s attention. But, let’s not try to use logic and reason where TIME is involved, or anyone else in our lunatic world for that matter…

  15. The Masked Chicken says:

    Time, really, ought to have different subcategories for Person of the Year. That way, Snowden could have won for most Politically Upsetting Person of the Year and Pope Francis could have won for most Confusing Person of the Year :)

    The Chicken

  16. BLB Oregon says:

    If someone had asked for the vote of Benedict XVI, I believe he would have voted for the current Holy Father and not for himself, because his departure was for the sake of giving the Church a pastor more capable of the demands of the Chair of Peter. His departure is certainly among the stories that will mark this year in history, but he would not want the year to be about his departure. He would want it to be about what his departure brought about for the sake of the Church. He was convinced he could not give what was needed, which is why he deemed a replacement was necessary.

  17. LarryW2LJ says:

    At least the picture is “neutral”. In many cases, magazines like this can subtly editorialize by choosing unflattering or demeaning images. Not the best picture if the Holy Father, but not the worst, either. The picture with the dove would have been nice.

  18. mburduck says:

    Let’s take it! Some folks will be really upset when they figure him out, though. As was said earlier, I don’t think the liberals realize that he won’t be signing up to play for their team.


  19. BLB Oregon says:

    All things that keep Snowden off of the covers of magazines are good things, until proven otherwise.

  20. mburduck says:

    Oh–and Reynolds is still excommunicated. I’m taking charitable wagers on how long that will last. LOL!

    Let’s just say–forever! [I deeply, sincerely, hope not.]

  21. McCall1981 says:

    Everyone keeps saying that the liberals and the secular media are eventually going to figure out that Francis isn’t on their team and will turn on him. I for one will be relieved if/when it happens, because the secular press fawning over him makes me anxious. When is it finally going to happen again?

  22. Robbie says:

    Count me as one who’s not overwhelmed by this. Time chose Francis because they, like much of the rest of the world, see him as a true liberal. They might not get everything they want from Francis (women’s ordination for one), but he’s a major step to the left from JPII and B16, especially in tone.

    I know my view’s out of phase with most here, but I doubt the left will ever become truly disenchanted with Francis. Maybe the far, far left cranks might, but that wouldn’t be any different than the rad trads losing faith in a Pope Ranjith were he not to reinstate the TLM within a year or two of being elected.

    Regardless, if this opens the eyes of many to the Church, great. I just hope it’s not for the wrong reasons.

  23. Eliane says:

    I agree, Robbie, that the so-called “left” realizes that Francis will not change moral teaching or dogma. But I don’t think they care, as long as they are able to infer an encouraging wink and a nod from his comments and conduct. They believe he is laying groundwork for the changes they seek to come later, and as long as they believe that, they will fawn over him. The onus is thus on Francis to set the record straight; pundits and Catholic apologists cannot do it for him, nor are they effective when they try.

  24. BLB Oregon says:

    –“Oh–and Reynolds is still excommunicated. I’m taking charitable wagers on how long that will last. LOL!”–

    Ah, the charitable wager holds out hope that he will come to his senses while still in this life, repent of his error, and be reconciled with the Church. That would be the best thing for everyone.

  25. Unwilling says:

    “[I deeply, sincerely, hope not.]”

    Fr Z, such a response covers a multitude of … ok, imperfections.
    You earn bushels of merit points for that short sweet calibration.

  26. excalibur says:

    The Franciscans of the Immaculate are being put through quite a trial it seems. There is a petition to remove Fr. Volpi as overseer.


  27. Robbie says:

    The jarring revelations that are emerging about the FFI and the apostolic commissioner who has called then crypto-Lefebvrian is one reason why I think it’s too early to declare that Francis isn’t a liberal (I’m not talking about doctrine). My goodness, the FFI are being required to take an oath accepting the NO on threat of expulsion.


  28. TNCath says:

    I find it interesting, if not refreshing, that Time actually chose him. However, I’m not so sure we should give Time that much time or credit for having chosen him. Clearly, they have chosen him for some of the quirky things he has done and said. I predict within the year they will be ripping him to shreds with attacks. They certainly did with John Paul II.

  29. La Sandia says:

    Count me as one who believes that something is seriously amiss when the “world” heaps adulation upon the Pope. Count me skeptical that the Pontificate of Francis will inspire Catholics to return in droves to the practice of the Faith and the reception of the Sacraments. More likely that they will read media headlines about the Pope decrying “small-minded rules” and “obsession” over hot-button moral issues and conclude that there is no need to amend their lives. All this slobbering over Pope Francis is frankly making me a little nauseated.

  30. jm says:

    Man, rather damning that the consolation is, “Just wait, the liberals will turn on him!” Is that supposed to be a prophecy, or something we keep trying to convince ourselves of? [It is what will happen.] The truth is, the conservatives will toe the line, and liberals will never be happy but will take what they can get. [Nope. They will eventually turn on each other, too.] This repeated mantra, “Meanwhile, former-Father Greg Reynolds is still excommunicated” is laughable. [You are welcome to go read a nice blog where you don’t have to see such things.] One excommunication, of a *radical*, and we are supposed to take heart? [Yep. It is a fact.] It’s sort of like saying, “Well, he’s STILL wearing a crucifix!” But wait, the ferula isn’t quite one anymore, is it? [No. It isn’t like that at all.]

  31. Lin says:

    Diane Sawyer was gushing on the nightly news tonight about the Pope’s inclusiveness, i.e., gays and those who are pro-abortion. No matter how they spin it, I’m glad it was Pope Francis and not Miley Cyrus!! I pray the day comes very soon when the progressives are sent packing!!!

  32. Mr. Green says:

    Fr. Z: could it be argued that Benedict XVI made an even greater impact by resigning and then opening the way to the election of Francis?

    Perhaps that’s why they had Francis’s head covering the “M” — to indicate it was a TIE.

    Anyway, of course it’s no compliment to be proclaimed ManPerson of the Year by Time, but remember that Time Magazine isn’t what it once was. They’re jumping on Pope Francis’s bandwagon, and I agree with those who point out that if it leads even a few people to the Church, that is a good thing.

  33. mburduck says:

    I should have stated “unless he repents,” of course. My error. Forgiveness is what we’re all about!


  34. HighMass says:

    If being Person of the Year is about the impact the person made, could it be argued that Benedict XVI made an even greater impact by resigning and then opening the way to the election of Francis?

    LETS FACE ITS FOLKS…..The secular Media would rather choke than Give our Sweet Pope Benedict XVI an ounce of Credit………..

    Pope E. Benedict we LOVE YOU AND MISS YOU HORRIBLY………

  35. This constant lauding by the world is nauseating…Lord Have Mercy

  36. Unwilling says:

    I can understand “insiders” being a little nervous about the Pope being put up by such a thing as Time. But most (I won’t say “readers”) who do no more than catch a glimpse of the cover will have thoughts with the potential for much good.

    And, I don’t believe it did any harm to Pope John Paul II in 1994 or to Pope John XXIII in 1963 (granted that in 1963, Time was a much less scary thing).

  37. pseudomodo says:

    The Pope was hopefully (?!) chosen by the MSM for his apparent ability to “change” the dogmas of the church and to provide healing! And so early in his pontificate.

    I was hoping that I wasn’t going to be the first to say this, but perhaps Adam Shaw was correct in a weird sort of way. Francis perhaps IS the Catholic Obama.

  38. birdie says:

    Thud, that’s the sound of my head banging against the keyboard from reading these comments. The vast majority of liberals loved Blessed Mother Teresa….so she must of been doing something wrong too.

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