One of the great things about living in Washington DC area is that very influential people from all around the world come to visit. The leader of the Catholic Church, Pope Francis, recently visited the United States of America and was overall met by large crowds filled with love and enthusiasm. Even many non-Catholics came out to see and hear what the Pope had to say. While I am not religious in any sense, Pope Francis is one of the several world leaders that I check the news on from time to time.
Pope Francis is the spiritual leader of 1.6 billion people so when he says something, people tend to pay attention. Other leaders that I check on regularly are the Dalai Lama, President of Finland Sauli Niinisto, President of Russia Vladimir Putin, President of China Xi Jinping, Queen Elizabeth II, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom David Cameron, Prime Minister of Japan Shinzo Abe, and a few others. Growing up in the DC area you are forced to pay attention to politics and world events. All of the leaders I read about have strong influences within there group and while many I may not agree with or even like, their decisions influence the world and events within.
So back to the Pope’s visit to DC. He met with many different people and groups and for the most part alot of them were very positive and uplifting even to non-believers because the message is universal to humans. Pope Francis spoke to Congress about climate change saying that this problem hurts those in poverty the most and that American leaders have the real ability to inflict change. The science has been showing that climate change is a real issue that needs to be dealt with now but people in power act that climate change is not factual and instead more of a belief or an outrageous theory. The Pope mentioning the fact climate change needs to be dealt with now adds weight to this. Hopefully the 1.6 billion followers will help institute some change in this matter.
The Pope also had other messages to Congress some of which I don’t agree with but those are more based off beliefs instead of science such as gay marriage which I fully support. There was another topic the Pope has been strongly speaking out about which is poverty and helping immigrates. Poverty strikes so many within this jewel of a world and it is difficult for all of these individuals to properly live. America is one of the countries that holds so many rich individuals that hold many luxuries while so many others within the same country struggle. It is my hope that people heard these messages and spread the wealth a bit instead of buying multiple mansions or expensive cars.
The Pope did have similar messages when he visited New York City and Philiadephia. Pope Francis did hold mass at each city, spoke to the United Nations and visited ground zero. One interesting moment was went he declined a dinner invitation in DC and instead ate and met with the homeless at one of the shelters. A class act no-matter who you are.
Overall it was nice to have the Pope visit and speak to the leaders and people of our country. The general mood within DC, NYC, and Philly during the Pope’s visit was positive and welcoming. I personally did not go into the city to attept to see the Pope, I wanted more people that would truly enjoy it to have the space although I will say I would have liked to if I had an entire day to fight through the crowds. The Pope him self stated that the crowds that lined the streets to see him were extremely diverse and a wonderful representation of the United States. I will say no matter if one is religious or not, one should listen and hear what influential spiritual leaders say. For the most part the messages are of being good to everyone and helping others. I strongly encourage all of you to follow world leaders and see what they have to say because it all can affect you.