The cardinal-designate spoke about the situations faced by people in his country, the changing dynamic of the College of Cardinals and how Francis is "reviving" the church.
It is important that "a homliy isn't boring." If one looks at the homilies of Francis, "there is nothing boring. There is always something that challenges people."
Cities can be chaotic and cold, but people need God in a metropolis as much as they need him anywhere, Pope Francis said.
Lay Catholics especially are called "to go out without fear," offering a human touch and God's love to people they work with or live near, the pope said Saturday during a meeting with members of the Pontifical Council for the Laity.
The commission, which mentions the word "accountability" four times in its statement, says it is "keenly aware that the issue of accountability is of major importance."
My parents were ahead of their times in not believing in corporal punishment when I grew up after the Second World War. The only time I remember being slapped by my father was when my brother was fooling around in the backseat of the car. My father's normal reservoir of patience had finally been exhausted and he swung at my brother, who quickly ducked, leaving me the recipient of the slap.
If looks could kill, my father would have been dead and my mother prosecuted for murder. I was too shocked to cry and blamed my brother not my father. I still blame my brother.
The commission advising Pope Francis on clergy sexual abuse will be recommending consequences for bishops who do not report abuse.
Francis has called again for a more "incisive" presence of women in the leadership of the Catholic church, calling them akin to a "welcoming womb" but offering few specifics.
Homeless people in Rome will now have access to three new showers and a small barber shop in a space near St. Peter's Square, after construction of new facilities undertaken on the pope's behalf.
Completion of the work, which has captivated attention for its focus on the needs of Rome's poorest, was announced in a brief press statement Friday.
A two-day meeting in Rome next week of the world's Catholic cardinals will focus mainly on discussing reform of the church's central bureaucracy, the Vatican spokesman said Thursday.
Speaking to reporters briefly on a number of topics, Vatican spokesman Jesuit Fr. Federico Lombardi also said there was no other theme for the meeting, called by Pope Francis for Feb. 12-13.
A letter to the leaders of the world's bishops' conferences and the various Catholic religious orders asks them to cooperate fully with all initiatives to prevent sexual abuse of minors.