Pope Francis © shutterstock
Overshadowed by the Corona crisis, Pope Francis marked the seventh anniversary of his election on Friday. A rather quiet day for the Pope. Now 83 years old, he was inaugurated on 13. March 2013 to succeed Benedict XVI. were elected.
Public events did not take place. In a historically unprecedented move, the Pope's deputy in the diocese of Rome, Cardinal Angelo De Donatis, had ordered the closure of all parish churches the previous evening. However, by midday Friday, the measure had already been largely withdrawn.
"Drastic measures are not always good"
Francis had prayed for strength and discernment for priests at the beginning of his morning Mass at the Santa Marta residence for the right help. In doing so, he added: "Drastic measures are not always good." He went on to pray for "the sick, the families who are suffering from the pandemic". Only a few people attended the service, including Francis' two private secretaries.
As pope, Francis is spiritual leader of 1.3 billion Catholics worldwide. Themes of the Jesuit's term so far have been reforms of church leadership, strengthening decisions of conscience, the fight against sexual abuse and sustainable global development. Some conservative circles in the Church, including in ranks of the Curia, accuse him of abandoning Catholic principles.