- Oct 31, 2020
On Saturday two of Pope Francis’s most trusted advisors took part in the latest edition of the World Meeting of Popular Movements, which has been supported by the pope since the early days of his pontificate.
Perhaps we can’t judge the impact of Pope Francis on politics by the usual measures, because, befitting his Argentinian populist outlook, he’s more interested in horizontal rather than vertical change.
In a forward he penned for a new book dedicated to the so-called “popular movements” prominent in South America, Pope Francis said the groups are an alternative to the populist wave spreading through much of global society.
Pope Francis on Friday took part in a dedication ceremony for a new Vatican headquarters for ‘Scholas Occurentes,’ dedicated to building networks of schools around the world. Like the World Meeting of Popular Movements, Francis is institutionalizing his vision, ensuring that his initiatives to promote social activism and hear the voices of the base will survive his papacy and form part of his legacy.
“The pope says he’s the servant of the servant of the people of God. So he never asked us to do anything. He may well disagree with 70 percent of our actions or our work. He just encourages this idea of people self-organizing. The other is our job and our decision,” said Juan Grabois of the Confederation of Workers of the Popular Economy in Buenos Aires.
In a message to the U.S. Regional World Meeting of Popular Movements being held in Modesto, California, Pope Francis asked the participants to resist the temptation to demonize others, to instead protect the earth because “time is running out,” and fight against “the invisible tyranny of money that only guarantees the privileges of a few.”