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Local catholic leaders say pope's remarks brought people to church
WEST MICHIGAN (NEWSCHANNEL 3) - West Michigan catholic leaders say Pope Francis' recent remarks are bringing people back to the church.
Last week, in his first in-depth interview since he became pope, Francis said the church was putting too much emphasis on abortion, gay marriage and contraception and that the issues are driving people away.
He warned that the church's foundation will crumble if it fails to find a new balance between spirituality and politics.
Bishop Paul Bradley of the Kalamazoo Diocese says the pope's comments are attracting people back to Catholicism.
"I've heard a number of our priests say that they've had a number of people come back to confession of their faith because of the things they heard the pope say, but he's challenging us to not sit back and wait for them to come back," said Bishop Bradley.
Other American bishops said they have no immediate plans to change their messages after the pope's comments, but theologians say some change is inevitable, since Pope Francis is determined not to be a culture warrior.