Bruce Morrill, the Edward A. Malloy Chair of Catholic Studies at Vanderbilt University’s Divinity School and a Jesuit priest, discusses the impact and appeal of Pope Francis, the first Jesuit priest appointed Pope in Vatican history. With the upcoming historical address by a Pope to the U.S. Congress set for this month, Pope Francis’s impact on the Catholic Church and the world already is significant and his popularity has skyrocketed. But, Morrill says, not everyone among the Catholic hierarchy is happy.
As a papal expert, Morrill can discuss the teaching and practices of Pope Francis, a fellow Jesuit, and the significance of a Jesuit pope. Morrill’s most recent book is Encountering Christ in the Eucharist: The Paschal Mystery in People, Word, and Sacrament (Paulist Press, 2012). In his forthcoming book, The Essential Writings of Bernard Cooke: A Narrative Theology of Church, Sacrament, and Ministry (Paulist, 2016), Morrill presents Cooke as the Vatican-II-era change-agent of American Catholic theology and religious education that he was. In addition, Morrill is writing an analysis of sacramental ritual practice in U.S. Catholicism, comparing and contrasting clerical and lay perspectives.
In Nashville, he presides and preaches regularly at the Cathedral of the Incarnation and provides pastoral-liturgical ministry to men at Riverbend Maximum Security Prison.