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2013: The Year of Pope Francis December 26, 2013
Summary: The top religion stories of 2013, and how Pope Francis is creating a humbler, warmer Catholic Church.
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The Year's Top Religion Stories: Non-Pope Edition December 26, 2013
In our annual tradition, two of our favorite religion news analysts reflect on the the stories that mattered in the past year. Catholics, Evangelicals and others fought the contraception mandate in Obama's Affordable Care Act. Polls found that Americans are becoming even more secular, and religious conflicts broke out in Syria, Egypt, Myanmar and other countries. And then there was the biggest story of all: the resignation of Pope Benedict, and the entrance of Pope Francis. More on that in the show's second half.

Kevin Eckstrom, Editor-in-Chief of Religion News Service
Kim Lawton, Managing Editor of Religion & Ethics NewsWeekly
 
Credit: Catholic Church | flickr
Pope Francis: Transforming the Catholic Church December 26, 2013
After just nine months in office, Pope Francis has added a warmer, humbler touch to the Catholic Church. He's washed the feet of prisoners and kissed disfigured people. He said he won't "judge" gay people and has called unchecked capitalism "a new tyranny." Three top religion analysts reflect on the new style, and perhaps even substance, of Pope Francis.

Rev. Thomas Reese, Jesuit priest and senior analyst for the National Catholic Reporter
Kevin Eckstrom
, Editor-in-Chief of Religion News Service
Kim Lawton, Managing Editor of Religion & Ethics NewsWeekly