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Pope Francis: TIME Person of the Year -- But Why? Is He Changing the Church?

Contact: Nick Thomm, Executive Producer, 'Kresta in the Afternoon,' 734-277-0693, nthomm@avemariaradio.net

ANN ARBOR, Mich., Dec. 11, 2013 /Christian Newswire/ -- This morning TIME magazine named Pope Francis its person of the year, hailing the head of the Catholic Church as a new voice of global conscience since taking office in March. He is the first non-European pope in nearly 1,300 years, the first Latin American head of the Church and a leading voice for the dispossessed. TIME says he took on a Church beset by scandal and signs of deep internal dysfunction, but there are signs that his popularity is revitalizing it. TIME managing editor Nancy Gibbs said they chose Francis "for pulling the papacy out of the palace and into the streets, for committing the world's largest church to confronting its deepest needs and for balancing judgment with mercy."

But is this really new? Did Pope John Paul II and Pope Benedict the XVI not care for the poor? Has Pope Francis changed any teachings of the Church? Al Kresta, President and CEO of Ave Maria Radio, host of a daily 2-hour talk show heard on over 250 stations nationwide, and author of the newly-released "Dangers to the Faith: Recognizing Catholicism's 21st Century Opponents," is available for interviews and comments on Pope Francis and the future of the Church.