President Barack Obama says he is “hugely impressed” with Pope Francis’s recent public statements — but apparently the president isn’t paying much attention since the Pope has strongly condemned abortion.
Obama appears to be responding to misleading media presentations of the Pope’s comments on the Catholic Church and abortion. The media wrongly reported that Pope Francis wanted to back off the issue of abortion when all he was saying is that the Catholic Church needs to help reconnect women who have had abortions to the Church.
From a report on Obama’s comments:
It’s “not because of any particular issue” but because “he seems somebody who lives out the teachings of Christ,” Obama said in an interview Wednesday with CNBC.
Pope Francis has “incredible humility, an incredible sense of empathy to the least of these, to the poor,” the president said. “And he’s also somebody who’s, I think, first and foremost, thinking about how to embrace people as opposed to push them away, how to find what’s good in them as opposed to condemn them.”
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The pope has made recent comments arguing that the Catholic Church should focus on more than just a few hot-button social issues. In an interview last month, he said he “cannot insist only on issues related to abortion, gay marriage and the use of contraceptives.”