Pope Interview Interpreted by Followers

Pope sets new tone

POSTED: 04:52 AM PST Dec 24, 2013    UPDATED: 10:11 AM PDT Sep 20, 2013 
Pope Francis
SANTA BARBARA, Calif. -

Past popes have attacked gay marriage, abortion, condoms and divorce, but the new pontiff is setting a new tone.

In an interview last month, Pope Francis talked about his Jesuit beliefs and said the church should not focus on limited ideology.

"It is not necessary to talk about these issues all the time," the pope told an Italian Jesuit journal.  He said, "The dogmatic and moral teachings of the church are not all equivalent. The church's pastoral ministry cannot be obsessed with the transmission of a disjointed multitude of doctrines to be imposed insistently.

Pope Francis wants to welcome more people into the church without judging them.

At the Old Mission Santa Barbara Fr. Larry Gosselin called the pope a great man of caring , love and leadership. He said he was thrilled with what he is doing.

Fr. Tom Elewaut, Pastor at San Buenaventura Mission, said, "I believe the pope is reminding all of us in the church, and specifically the clergy, to find balance in what we preach and what topics clergy cover in their sermons.  We are all called to conversion from sin and to live the Gospel message…not just one particular group but everyone…so I take the pope's comments as a reminder not to narrowly focused on one issue or group of people, and to remind us all to live the Gospel as taught by Jesus that is entrusted to the church."

Elewaut said the focus was the pope's Jesuit beliefs and how they have influenced his role as pope.

The clergy members said the church has not changed its rules.