Holy Cross Community Weighs in on New Pope, Future of Catholic Church

College president, faculty and students share thoughts on Pope Francis with media
March 14th, 2013 by 


Mathew Schmalz, associate professor of religious studies, offered commentary for NECN's "The Morning Show" throughout the conclave and after the new pope was announced.

Within minutes of seeing white smoke emerge from the Sistine Chapel signaling a new head of the Roman Catholic Church, members of the media made their way to campus to watch the historic event unfold with students gathered in the Hogan Campus Center. Others connected with faculty members by phone, who commented live during the suspenseful wait for the new pontiff to emerge.

Upon the announcement that Argentinian cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio, a Jesuit, had been chosen as the new pope, journalists near and far — from Worcester to Slovakia — called upon members of the Holy Cross community for their thoughts on Pope Francis and what his election means for the future of the Catholic Church.

College president Rev. Philip L. Boroughs, S.J., faculty members from varying disciplines, and students all offered perspectives on the historic announcement.

In the Telegram & Gazette, Fr. Boroughs remarked that Cardinal Bergoglio served in the upper hierarchy of the church, but he shunned the amenities of the office. “He seems to be a man of the people,” he said. Melissa Luttman ’15, watched the announcement in her Latin class, and was excited that a Jesuit had been chosen. “That commitment to social justice is something we really identify with at Holy Cross,” Luttman told the reporter.

Mathew Schmalz, associate professor of religious studies, who has been a go-to source for the media since Pope Benedict announced his resignation last month, said this morning on NECN’s “The Morning Show” that he assumed an Italian had been elected because the conclave was so short. “I was wrong, but I feel good about being wrong,” he said. “What the cardinals said before the conclave was that they wanted a pope who exemplified personal holiness, and this is what they meant. Someone who asks for the silent prayers of all those assembled because he knows he needs their love and support.”

Rev. Thomas Worcester, S.J., who authored two books on papal history and teaches a course in the papacy, was also surprised by the announcement. “That they picked a Jesuit did surprise me,” he told “Worcester News Tonight.” Elaborating on what a Jesuit might bring to the papacy, the history professor told the Slovakian newspaper Pravda that “Jesuits have a world-wide perspective and strong commitment to justice for the poor. These things should influence his papacy.”

Select news coverage:

For more on the Holy Cross community’s contributions to media coverage of Pope Benedict’s resignation see: Media Worldwide Turn to Holy Cross Faculty for Comment on the Pope’s Resignation

For news related to the papal conclave see: Holy Cross Faculty Experts Share Insights on Papal Conclave, Benedict’s Successor with the Media

| More
Tags

Comments are closed.

12/02/16 Video: Holy Cross Community Recognizes Importance of Diversity During Unity Week
12/02/16 Holy Cross Election Experts Provide Insight Post-Election
11/30/16 Video: Holy Cross Students are ‘More Engaged’
11/28/16 Holy Cross Alumni Dedicate a Year of Service with the Jesuit Volunteer Corps
See All
See All
Featured Videos

See video
Video: Holy Cross Students are ‘More Engaged’

Watch Video >
See video
Video: Take a Look at Campus Life After the Sun Sets

Watch Video >
See video
Photo Gallery, Video: Class of 2020 Receives A Holy Cross Welcome on Move-In Day

Watch Video >
See video
VIDEO: Stephen Colbert Talks Holy Cross in Web Exclusive

Watch Video >
See video
Video: Total Giving to Holy Cross Breaks Record With $46.7 Million Raised

Watch Video >
See video
Video: Spring Blooms on Holy Cross Campus

Watch Video >
See video
Video: Class of 2016 Shares What’s Next

Watch Video >
See video
‘Major in Anything…Succeed in Business’

Watch Video >
See video
Photo Gallery, Video: Obama Advisor Broderick Johnson ’78 Speaks on ‘My Brother’s Keeper,’ Other White House Initiatives

Watch Video >
See video
Crusaders Win Patriot League Championship

Watch Video >
More
What's Happening on Campus

Woven Power: Ritual Textiles of Sarawak and West Kalimantan
12/5/2016
O'Kane Hall Cantor Art Gallery
"Pua kumbu" are magnificent, intricately dyed, hand-loomed cotton ikat textiles once woven as religious... See More >

Habitat for Humanity
12/5/2016
Henry M. Hogan Campus Center Lobby Table 3
Come to Hogan 3 to support Habitat for Humanity's fundraising efforts. Committee members will be selling... See More >

Advent Lessons/Carols Rehearsal
12/5/2016

See More >

Field Hockey Event
12/5/2016

See More >

More Holy Cross in the News

12/02/16

Video: Holy Cross Community Recognizes Importance of Diversity During Unity Week

Worcester News Tonight

On “Worcester News Tonight,” broadcasted on Charter Channel 3, several student leaders at the College of the Holy Cross provided insight on the importance of the...

11/28/16

Lt. John Vincent Power ’37 Memorial Statue Rededicated and Restored

Telegram & Gazette

In honor of Veteran’s Day, the city of Worcester rededicated and restored the John Vincent Power Memorial—a bronze statue in honor of the late Lt. John Vincent Power—to...

11/23/16

Holy Cross Alumnus Receives Worcester’s Isaiah Thomas Award

Telegram & Gazette

Frederick Eppinger ’81 and his wife, Patty recently received the Isaiah Thomas Award during an awards ceremony at Mechanics Hall for their “transformative impact on...