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Pope Francis in the United States: Challenges and Opportunities for Progressives

Since his installation in March 2013, Pope Francis has inspired and fascinated people across the globe. Simultaneously humble and prophetic, Pope Francis is changing the face of the Catholic Church and the way that millions of people view it.

The pope’s visit to the United States this month will include visits with immigrants, prisoners, and low-income families, along with Mass celebrations for thousands of people. Pope Francis will also address a joint meeting of Congress—the first pope in history to do so—where he is expected to bring his call for justice and dignity for all people to the power center of U.S. politics.

What can we expect from this unpredictable pope? What challenges and opportunities will his message present to policymakers, advocates, and citizens? What can each of us do in our own spheres of influence to bring about a world more like the one for which Pope Francis prays?

The Center for American Progress is pleased to host a panel of faith-based advocates and experts for a conversation about the papal visit and its implications for politics, policies, advocacy, and action. Following the panel, Sen. Edward Markey (D-MA) will give remarks on the opportunity that the pope’s teachings provide for conversations about the challenges of climate change and finding ways for everyone to cooperate in the care of creation. Please join the Center for American Progress for this enlightening and lively conversation.

Copies of John Gehring’s book, The Francis Effect: A Radical Pope’s Challenge to the American Catholic Church, will be available for purchase at the event.

Panelists:
John Gehring, Catholic Program Director, Faith in Public Life

Rudy López, Executive Director, Interfaith Worker Justice

Shantha Ready Alonso, Executive Director, Creation Justice Ministries

Moderated by:
Sally Steenland, Director, Faith and Progressive Policy Initiative, Center for American Progress

Introduction:
Carmel Martin, Executive Vice President for Policy, Center for American Progress

Closing Remarks:
Sen. Edward J. Markey (D-MA)

Additional information

Light refreshments will be served at 2:30 p.m.