News

Pope Francis is ‘Time’ magazine’s Person of the Year

Pope Francis is ‘Time’ magazine’s Person of the Year

PERSON OF THE YEAR: Pope Francis listens to a speaker delivering his message translated in different languages during his weekly general audience in St. Peter's Square at the Vatican, Wednesday, Dec. 11. Photo: Associated Press/Alessandra Tarantino

By Elizabeth Dilts

(Reuters) – Time magazine named Pope Francis as its Person of the Year on Wednesday, crediting him with shifting the message of the Catholic Church while capturing the “imaginations of millions” who had become disillusioned with the Vatican.

“So much of what he has done in his brief nine months in office has really changed the tone of what is coming out of the Vatican,” Time Editor Nancy Gibbs said in announcing the choice on NBC television’s “Today” program. “He is saying, ‘We are about the healing mission of the church, and not about the theological police work’.”

The Pope beat out former U.S. National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden and gay rights activist Edith Windsor for the award. Other finalists included Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and U.S. Senator Ted Cruz from Texas.

“What makes this Pope so important is the speed with which he has captured the imaginations of millions who had given up on hoping for the church at all,” Time said on its website.

In a statement read on “Today,” Vatican spokesman Father Federico Lombardi said, “The Holy Father is not looking to become famous or to receive honors. But if the choice of Person of the Year helps spread the message of the gospel – a message of God’s love for everyone – he will certainly be happy about that.”

Recent Headlines

in Music

This week’s top rock tracks

Zac Brown as Zac Brown Band performs during Music Midtown 2014 at Piedmont Park on Saturday, Sep. 20, 2014, in Atlanta.

LISTEN: This week's top rock songs, according to the latest Billboard chart.

in Entertainment, Sports, Viral Videos

WATCH: Getting married by The Rock

19-overlay7

It's normal to cry at weddings, but you'll laugh at this one too.

in Weird

Foiled by a hat

Police

A man evading police almost got away - if it wasn't for his lost hat.

in Trending, Viral Videos

TODAY’S MUST SEE: ‘Game of Thrones: The Musical’

15-overlay6

Coldplay teams up with the cast of "Game of Thrones" for a hilarious musical version of the hit HBO show to help raise money for Red Nose Day.

in Viral Videos

Mom shames daughter for inappropriate Facebook profile

16-overlay5

After Val Starks found her 13-year-old daughter's secret profile - posing in her bra and claiming to be 19 - she set the record straight and the video has gone viral.