MM3 – The Centrality of Mercy for Pope Francis, Pope Benedict XVI and Pope St. John Paul II – The Mystery of Mercy with Sr. Gill Goulding C.J. – A Discerning Hearts Podcast

Episode 3  The Mystery of Mercy with Sr. Gill Goulding C.J.

In this episode, Sr. Gill will explore the significant continuity of the centrality of mercy for Pope Francis and for his predecessors Pope Benedict XVI and Pope St John Paul II. The common resonance of their language and the scriptural depth each brings to their understanding of mercy is both illuminating and encouraging. It is also very moving to see how Pope Francis owns his indebtedness to his predecessor when he says in Evangelii Gaudium [7], “I never tire of repeating those words of Benedict XVI which take us to the very heart of the Gospel: “Being a Christian is not the result of an ethical choice or a lofty idea, but the encounter with an event, a person, which gives life a new horizon and a decisive direction.” Both Popes reference the writings of Pope John Paul II:  The joy of mercy becomes ever more evident.

Sr Gill Goulding CJ is a member of the Congregatio Jesu an order founded by Mary Ward in 1609. The Congregation has the same constitutions as the Society of Jesus. Sr Gill is Professor of Systematic Theology at Regis College, the Jesuit Graduate School of Theology at the University of Toronto. She is a member of the Theological Commission of the Conference of Religious in Canada and was appointed by the Conference of Canadian Bishops as one of two RC members of the Council of Canadian Churches. In 2012 she was honored and humbled to be appointed by Pope Benedict XVI as a theological expert to the 2012 Synod of Bishops on the New Evangelization and the transmission of the Christian Faith. In 2017 Sr Gill was awarded a Henry Luce III Fellowship for a project looking at the dynamic impact of mercy on the mission of the Church. During this sabbatical year, she spent a number of months in Rome and was thrilled to meet Pope Frances and to present to him an outline of her project and to receive his blessing on her work.

Sr. Gill’s project was made possible by a grant from the Luce Foundation


Church of Passion and Hope To obtain a copy of the book on which this series is based visit here

“Gill Goulding, C.J. invites readers to move beyond a debilitating polarization in the Church and to adopt an ecclesiology of communion. She presents the ecclesial disposition of St Ignatius of Loyola, rooted in love for Christ, alive to the inseparable union between Christ and the Church, and aware that to love Christ is to love the Church – the real, concrete, hierarchical, “institutional” Church, the people of God, the spouse of Christ infused by His Spirit. Goulding’s love for the Church is evident in all she writes and suffuses the exposition with warmth. One cannot read this book without feeling the call to communion in the Church. A Church of Passion and Hope also serves to highlight an underemphasized part of the Ignatian Spiritual Exercises – the Rules for Thinking (sentir) with the Church – a valuable contribution to Ignatian writing and practice.” ―Fr Timothy Gallagher, O.M.V., Saint Clement Eucharistic Shrine, USA

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