Pope Francis Travels to Assisi

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On Friday, October 4, which was the feast day of Saint Francis, Pope Francis traveled to Assisi, his namesake’s hometown. He met with young people, celebrated Mass, and visited several of the sites where the 13th-century Francis lived and worked.

Earlier in the week, Pope Francis held several days of closed-door meetings with a council of cardinals helping him develop a plan to reform the Vatican curia, the bureaucracy.

The meetings came as another candid interview with Francis was published in an Italian newspaper. In it, the pope denounced a Vatican-centric mindset, saying he wants a church that is “not just top-down, but also horizontal.” He criticized the narcissism of many church leaders, and he called for people of different views to listen to each other, saying “proselytism is solemn nonsense; it makes no sense.” Parts of the interview drew criticism from some conservatives.