Ideals worth sacrificing for: Pope to challenge U.S. Congress, U.N.

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August 13, 2015

Pope Francis meets a group of Nigerian refugees at the Vatican Aug. 12. The pope will address the U.S. Congress and the U.N. General Assembly during his September U.S. visit and will discuss the idea of one human family and shared responsibility for others and the world. (CNS photo/L'Osservatore Romano via Reuters) See VATICAN-LETTER-CONGRESS-UN Aug. 13, 2015.

Pope Francis meets a group of Nigerian refugees at the Vatican Aug. 12. The pope will address the U.S. Congress and the U.N. General Assembly during his September U.S. visit and will discuss the idea of one human family and shared responsibility for others and the world. (CNS photo/L’Osservatore Romano via Reuters)

VATICAN CITY (CNS) — Along with having a winning smile and a warm embrace, Pope Francis is known for challenging people.

He does it regularly at morning Mass — particularly calling out hypocrisy and gossip — and does not spare even his closest aides in the Roman Curia, so it is unlikely his speeches to the U.S. Congress and the U.N. General Assembly will let his audiences leave without a suggested examination of conscience.

His speeches to Congress and to the United Nations in late September will be less pastoral than his homilies, obviously, and more about policy. They will be crafted carefully with the assistance of the Vatican Secretariat of State.

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