Milan, Italy, Sep 27, 2013 / 14:29 pm
The discomfort among some Catholics caused by Pope Francis' frank comments in his recent interview with Jesuit publications should become a source of personal reflection, according to a prominent Italian sociologist.
"It is always useful to try to understand, to transform even the discomfort into cultural and political reflection, rather than keeping it in and later spitting it out as poison, as is the case with so many angry comments that now proliferate on the Internet," Massimo Introvigne, a sociologist of religion, wrote in a letter to the editor of Il Foglio, an Italian daily.
In addition to being a noted sociologist and author, Introvigne is the founder and managing director of the Center for Studies on New Religions, a group of scholars from around the globe who study new religious movements. He is the main author of the Encyclopedia of Religions in Italy and has worked with both the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe on matters of religious liberty and persecution.
He is also a leading member of Alleanza Cattolica, a movement which aims to study and to diffuse the Church's social doctrine. His letter can be read in an English translation at CNA in full here.