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Why the Pope Leads the Way He Leads: The analysis of a former Jesuit Seminarian

2014-01-18

In less than a year the Pope's unique style has surprised people from all walks of life. But there's one group in particular, who hasn't been all that surprised: The Jesuits

CHRIS LOWNEY 
Pope Francis: Why He Leads the Way he Leads
"Just like Dominicans, Franciscans, the U.S. Army, every group has its way of doing things, of approaching work, or approaching life and certainly the Jesuits do.”

Chris Lowney understands this mentality quite well and he expands on it, in his book 'Pope Francis: Why He Leads the Way he Leads.' He was a Jesuit seminarian for six years, so when the Pope talks about going out beyond one's comfort zone, he knows exactly where he's coming from. 

CHRIS LOWNEY 
Pope Francis: Why He Leads the Way he Leads
"Frontier spirit doesn't mean let's go to some country where people haven't gone before. Now the frontier is maybe your own family or maybe one mile away.” 

Then there's the Pope's practical wisdom, which Lowney says is inspired by St. Ignatius. His spiritual exercises can also be seen a decision making guide that trigger self reflection. 

CHRIS LOWNEY 
Pope Francis: Why He Leads the Way he Leads
"Is this me at my best self? Would I prefer to be modeling different values? So some deep sense of self awareness and sense of self.”

A lot has been said about the Pope's freedom. From improvising his speeches and giving interviews to not living where Popes have traditionally lived. Lowney says this comes from the Jesuit motto of doing things for 'God's Greater Glory' meaning detaching yourself from inner restraints. 

CHRIS LOWNEY 
Pope Francis: Why He Leads the Way he Leads
"But because I'm attached to my own fears of making a mistake or looking foolish, I'm not free enough to do what I should be doing, ok.”

Though this mentality comes from the values of the Catholic Church,  Lowney says it's distinctly Jesuit. With this message, in less than a year, the first Jesuit Pope has managed to make waves across the globe. 


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