Obama to pay visit to Pope
January 14th, 2014
12:48 PM ET
3 months ago

Obama to pay visit to Pope

(CNN) – President Barack Obama plans to soon meet with Pope Francis for the first time.

Secretary of State John Kerry said the President was “looking forward” to visiting the popular new leader of the Roman Catholic Church at the Vatican.

Kerry did not say when the trip would take place.

The White House said it had no specific travel announcements to make, but that Obama “very much looks forward to meeting Pope Francis at some point in the near future.”

Kerry, a Roman Catholic, met with Vatican leaders on Tuesday to discuss foreign policy and economic issues, including Francis’ outspoken stance on income inequality worldwide.

He did not meet with the Pope.

Obama has cited the Pope’s inequality stance himself in an economic address in December.

“Across the developed world, inequality has increased,” Obama said. “Some of you may have seen just last week, the Pope himself spoke about this at eloquent length. ‘How can it be,’ he wrote, ‘that it is not a news item when an elderly homeless person dies of exposure, but it is news when the stock market loses two points?’”

Obama met Francis’ predecessor, Benedict XVI, in 2009, six months after taking office. That meeting, which took place at the Vatican, was Obama’s only meeting with a Pope.

His presidency has been marked by some high-profile clashes with the Catholic Church, including over abortion and contraception.

But Francis’ approach to world economic issues is widely seen as more in line with Obama’s own approach than that of Benedict, who stepped down last year.

In an MSNBC interview last year, Obama called Francis an "extraordinarily thoughtful and soulful messenger of peace and justice."

"I haven't had a chance to meet him yet,” Obama said. “But everything that I've read, everything that I've seen from him, indicates the degree to, to which he is trying to remind us of those core obligations."


Filed under: John Kerry • President Obama
soundoff (27 Responses)
  1. Sniffit

    Oh boy. First Teatroll to go with the "secret muslim" crap gets a cookie....

    January 14, 2014 12:55 pm at 12:55 pm |
  2. Rudy NYC

    "Obama has cited the Pope’s inequality stance himself in an economic address in December."
    ------------------------------–
    Who can forget that moment? Half of the right wing flipped went Karl Rove amongst themselves. Could imagine the reaction had the Pope had said that after having perviously met Pres. Obama? It shivers me timbers just to think about it.

    January 14, 2014 01:01 pm at 1:01 pm |
  3. Sniffit

    "‘How can it be,’ he wrote, ‘that it is not a news item when an elderly homeless person dies of exposure, but it is news when the stock market loses two points?’”"

    Answer: plutocracy.

    Next question.

    January 14, 2014 01:02 pm at 1:02 pm |
  4. Gurgyl

    Great, he is a good pope.

    January 14, 2014 01:16 pm at 1:16 pm |
  5. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    Excellent!
    The President and Pope Francis viepoints vis-a-vis taking care of the least amongst us and the disenfranchised are quite in synch.
    Two Sundays ago I was in church and sat mouth wide open hearing a sermon that could've come straight out of one of President Obama's speeches.
    Sfe journey to you sir and tell Pope Francis that he's a breath of fresh air for Catholics.

    January 14, 2014 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  6. Dean

    "If you like your Pope, you can keep him".

    January 14, 2014 01:23 pm at 1:23 pm |
  7. J'Cincinnati'Redd

    So what do they exspect? If u dont work,dont save and dont understand that there is more to life than what you see on tv. You will be doomed. Having children when you cant even take care of your own lazy behind. Makes me sick.

    January 14, 2014 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  8. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA -aka- Take Back The House -aka- No Redemption Votes

    Do you think a President Romney would take time out of his day to speak with the Pope and discuss the poor? I think not!

    January 14, 2014 01:37 pm at 1:37 pm |
  9. Sniffit

    "So what do they exspect? If u dont work,dont save and dont understand that there is more to life than what you see on tv. You will be doomed. Having children when you cant even take care of your own lazy behind. Makes me sick."

    Hey, since we're playing the "gross and unsupportable assumptions game"...my turn: what you're really mad about is that you equate all those living in poverty and receiving government assistance with being minorities and it angers and scares you no end that they're reproducing faster than white America.

    Your turn...

    January 14, 2014 01:40 pm at 1:40 pm |
  10. Malory Archer

    Dean

    "If you like your Pope, you can keep him".

    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    Thanks – we will!

    January 14, 2014 01:42 pm at 1:42 pm |
  11. Tampa Tim

    I wonder if red state Catholics will jump ship, and join one of those right wing tea bag churches of Ayn Rand that make up the republican base.

    January 14, 2014 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
  12. J'Cincinnati'Redd

    Liberals dont care. They want more poor, because that is how they grow their voting block.

    January 14, 2014 01:49 pm at 1:49 pm |
  13. john

    nothing secret about it.

    January 14, 2014 01:52 pm at 1:52 pm |
  14. simplefaith

    Pope Francis is an Iconic figure. If you saw him hugging a man that had a terrible disease, and kissing the feet of prisoners and so many other unusual things, extraordinary. How many of our leaders would do such a thing. He gives us Roman Catholics hope. My son and his family has been going from one Christian Church to another. For us, my husband and I we stuck to our faith in the Catholicism and we are coming to our 41 wedding anniversary. Of course through the hundreds of years, there have been some dishonorable leaders in our religion, but we have held fast to our beliefs. Going to one Christian Church to another (Protestant) church to another does not seem true to our Lord God. Pope Francis is like a true believer of our faith. For those of you who are atheist, study our Catholic faith. It goes back to the Old Testiment. Our religion gives you hope, forgiveness, love and kindness. What is wrong with that?

    January 14, 2014 01:56 pm at 1:56 pm |
  15. Rox

    Look: one doesn't "pay a visit to Pope;" one is granted an audience.

    January 14, 2014 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
  16. Gurgyl

    Read my lips, no new pope....

    January 14, 2014 02:07 pm at 2:07 pm |
  17. Lynda/Minnesota

    "I haven't had a chance to meet him yet,” Obama said. “But everything that I've read, everything that I've seen from him, indicates the degree to, to which he is trying to remind us of those core obligations."

    One thing is for sure, this new Pope certainly has the right wing up in arms and blabbering in the wind.

    January 14, 2014 02:14 pm at 2:14 pm |
  18. jowl

    It's a fishing expedition, they are looking to create some 'gotcha' moments to smear the church. I hope the Pope is aware of how these people operate.

    January 14, 2014 02:16 pm at 2:16 pm |
  19. Silence DoGood

    @J'Cincinnati'Redd
    Liberals dont care. They want more poor, because that is how they grow their voting block.
    ---------
    I know! How underhanded to win the votes of the poor by trying to help them out to better their lives. We should follow the conservatives example, tell them they are lazy and get to back to their slave labor at Walmart. Or stop eating if they get laid off.

    January 14, 2014 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  20. Rubicon

    So this is the part where Obama is declared the Messiah? I wonder what will become of this.

    January 14, 2014 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  21. sonny chapman

    They have a lot in common: both try to follow the Words of JESUS.

    January 14, 2014 02:32 pm at 2:32 pm |
  22. Sniffit

    "One thing is for sure, this new Pope certainly has the right wing up in arms and blabbering in the wind."

    Incoming: It's time to take our religion back!!!!!

    January 14, 2014 02:37 pm at 2:37 pm |
  23. current state of the union

    My kid asked me what we did in the old days regarding feeding your kids, simple, if you didn't want to see your kid starve to death, you didn't have them without the means to support them , no population problems, now out of control. You think it doesn't bother me when I see a woman with 5 kids using her bridge card, while I struggle to feed mine? If you let them keep you at each others throat, this will continue, we must unite and demand change, I think were a long way from that at this point. The gop just spends do much money spreading lies, its frustrating as hel.l

    January 14, 2014 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  24. J'Cincinnati'Redd

    God bless!

    January 14, 2014 02:43 pm at 2:43 pm |
  25. shorething32

    So what is this going to cost us taxpayers a few million bucks more for our idiot president to go kiss the pope? We work our butts off in a weak economy, we finally start to feel like we are financially recovering so Obama drops healthcare on us and goes on vacation. Man I HATE Obama, I can't even respect him as a human being.

    January 14, 2014 02:44 pm at 2:44 pm |
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