The North is full of tangled things and texts and aching eyes,
And dead is all the innocence of anger and surprise,
And Christian killeth Christian in a narrow dusty room,
And Christian dreadeth Christ that hath a newer face of doom,
And Christian hateth Mary that God kissed in Galilee,–
GK Chesterton, Lepanto
Pope Francis has long had a strong devotion to Mary:
The Pope’s confidence in Our Lady developed because of two key personal awakenings that happened in the mid-1980s. In 1985 he attended a rosary that was being led by St John Paul II. The sight of the Polish Pope on his knees greatly moved him. He did some acute soul-searching as to how much he trusted Our Lady, and he later reflected: “I became aware of the density of the words of the Mother of Guadalupe to St Juan Diego: ‘Don’t be afraid, am I not perhaps your mother?’”
In 1986, the then Padre Bergoglio finished as rector in the seminary, and was sent to Germany for six months. At the time, to borrow modern parlance, Fr Bergoglio was not in a good place – the Dirty War had exacted a heavy toll on his nerves and he worried that the Jesuit community would never recover from the many mutinies that had taken place in their ranks.
Go here to read the rest. A tweet this week by the Pope underlined this devotion:
Judging from the comments to the tweet, and various reports about it, go here to read a typical one, many people are shocked, shocked to learn that Pope Francis is a Catholic and has a strong devotion to the Blessed Mother. Marian devotion has always been the hallmark of Catholicism. Where there is no such devotion there is no Catholicism. Bravo Il Papa!