Vatican City, Feb 13, 2020 / 10:33 am
In a newly published book, Pope Francis answers questions about himself and St. John Paul II, saying he learned the importance of joy and mercy from his predecessor, and they are in "total harmony" on the subject of priestly ministry.
"I think that joy is the most important characteristic of the encounter with the risen Jesus," Pope Francis said, noting the joy and mercy of John Paul II's pontificate, "I learned from him."
Pope Francis' thoughts on his predecessor and other topics are recorded in the Italian-language book "St. John Paul the Great," published Feb. 11 and co-authored with Fr. Luigi Maria Epicoco.
The book is divided into five chapters, each with information on an aspect or period of the life of John Paul II, written by Epicoco. These are followed by conversations with Pope Francis on related topics which took place from June 2019 to January 2020.