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Pope Francis

Pope Francis TIME 100
Max Rossi—Reuters

A moral leader in word and deed

Rare is the leader who makes us want to be better people. Pope Francis is such a leader.

His Holiness has moved us with his message of inclusion, especially for the poor, the marginalized and the outcast. But it has been his deeds, his bearing, the gestures at once simple and profound — embracing the sick, ministering to the homeless, washing the feet of young prisoners — that have inspired us all.

Pope Francis reminds us in ways that words alone cannot that no matter our station in life, we are bound by moral obligations to one another. His example challenges us to live out those obligations through work — to alleviate poverty, reduce inequality and promote peace; to feed the hungry, shelter the homeless, care for the sick and open new doors of opportunity and visions of possibility for everyone. His message of love and inclusion, his regard for “the least of these,” distills the essence of Jesus’ teachings and is a tonic for a cynical age. May we heed his humble example.

Obama is the 44th President of the U.S.

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