Raphael Tiberino, "The Pope is very intent on following Christ’s teaching and living in the shadow of Christ. I think he’s extremely good for the world because he’s a very humble individual, and if there’s anything the world needs, it’s a little bit more of a lesson on, ah, humbleness.
I think he’s extremely genuine. Before he became Pope, he was in a home where he was taking care of two blind priests in their 90’s. He was cooking and cleaning and washing them everyday. Anyone who can do that, it’s definitely not an act. Actually, he didn’t even want to become Pope.
He doesn’t shy away from someone who, say, has leprosy or elephantitis or something like that. He doesn’t hesitate to give them a big hug and grab them and kiss them. He’s like that with everybody. I mean, he drives his bodyguards crazy, but he’ll get out of a car in the middle of Rome. He’ll go to the poorest neighborhoods and hug people and kiss them, shake their babies and kiss their hands, whatever the case may be.
He’s leading by personal example, and the whole world is paying attention, not just Catholics. Obama did the deal with Cuba because of him. Boehner dropping out also has a lot to do with him. I think everyone is following his example, and it’s having an effect on everyone in very strange and different ways, but in good ways.
In my opinion, I think this Pope surpasses John Paul. John Paul was huge and influential but he didn’t leave the palace and move to a hotel and set up there because the Pope’s palace is too grandiose, but this Pope has.
I’m extremely Catholic, born and raised. I will be going to the Pope’s mass on Sunday. We’re all big fans of the Pope in my family."