Francis’ visits with local Jesuits provide key to understanding his papacy

National Catholic Reporter · 15/05/2023

When the Holy Father visited Hungary at the end of April, he met with the local Jesuit community. This practice of always meeting with the local Jesuits was initiated by Jesuit Fr. Antonio Spadaro, the editor of La Civilta Cattolica, which also publishes the transcript of these meetings.

The pope’s remarks in Hungary made headlines because one of the Jesuits asked him about his experiences during Argentina’s “dirty war.” Some accused then-Jesuit Fr. Jorge Mario Bergoglio of complicity in turning over Fr. Ferenc Jálics, a Hungarian-born Jesuit who was working in Argentina, to the military junta. The pope has been exonerated of such charges.

Still, his answer was remarkable. […]

It is impossible to understand Francis without paying close attention to the fact he is a Jesuit, and these transcripts provide a hermeneutical key to his Jesuit sensibilities.

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