Pope Francis Has Landed In Philly, Last Stop In US Tour, Urges ‘Unity’ Among Christians

Pope Francis has touched down in Philadelphia, the last of the U.S. cities he is to visit. The popular pontiff will end Saturday in attendance at the World Meeting of Families Festival.

Since being in America, the pope has dealt with such divisive issues as Iran and gay rights. This has angered some conservatives. Arina Grossu, director of the Center for Human Dignity at the Family Research Council, accused President Barack Obama of using the pope for his own machinations.

“It’s something that we see he’s trying to push his own political agenda and the Vatican of course found this offensive. And really the pope doesn’t want to be used as a political tool for the Obama administration.”

PHILADELPHIA, PA - SEPTEMBER 26: Pope Francis arrives at Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul, September 26, 2015 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. After visiting Washington and New York City, Pope Francis concludes his tour of the U.S. with events in Philadelphia on Saturday and Sunday.
PHILADELPHIA, PA – SEPTEMBER 26: Pope Francis arrives at Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul, September 26, 2015 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. After visiting Washington and New York City, Pope Francis concludes his tour of the U.S. with events in Philadelphia on Saturday and Sunday.
PHILADELPHIA, PA - SEPTEMBER 25: Pope Francis arrives at Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul, September 25, 2015 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. After visiting Washington and New York City, Pope Francis concludes his tour of the U.S. with events in Philadelphia on Saturday and Sunday.
PHILADELPHIA, PA – SEPTEMBER 25:
Pope Francis arrives at Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul, September 25, 2015 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. After visiting Washington and New York City, Pope Francis concludes his tour of the U.S. with events in Philadelphia on Saturday and Sunday.

Pope Francis perhaps made his biggest landing in Washington, as he addressed Congress to discuss the long-standing Catholic position on hatred, greed, poverty, and pollution.

“Our efforts must aim at restoring hope, righting wrongs, maintaining commitments and thus promoting the well-being of individuals and of peoples.”

The overall message was the message of Jesus, that of humbleness, humility, compassion, peace, and love. This message has resonated with the Green movement, which finds an unexpected ally in the fight to protect the Earth from human exploitation.

Getting back to Catholic fundamentals, the pope has made it clear to Christians that they must live their lives as exampled by Jesus, particularly in “humility, gentleness and magnanimity.”

Not all Americans are impressed with the pope’s visit, and some outspoken Republicans have suffered embarrassment at their criticism of the pope. Sarah Palin, for example, pejoritively referred to Pope Francis as “liberal” and therefore she would not “just trust what I hear.”

And so, ever etched in our memories is the glass “Popemobile,” but no doubt the pope’s tour of America will have even the staunchest critics thinking about their own glass houses.

[Images by Spencer Platt, Drew Angerer / Getty Images]

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