07 April 2020, The Tablet

Our father

Our father

Christopher Lamb with Pope Francis


The Tablet’s Vatican correspondent assesses the pontificate of Pope Francis

The Outsider: Pope Francis and His Battle to Reform the Church
(ORBIS BOOKS, 200 PP, £19.99)
Tablet bookshop price £16 • Tel 020 7799 4064

It’s very clear, within a few sentences of this lively book, that Christopher Lamb is a Franciscophile. And he makes it equally clear that what he’s writing is not a biography but an attempt to understand this extra­ordinary pontificate that began on the papal balcony on the evening of 13 March 2013 with an old man saying “Buona sera”.

Christopher Lamb has observed this man close-up, at home and abroad, since he became The Tablet’s permanently accredited Vatican correspondent in 2015. He’s watched Francis’ human touch and his political savvy; he’s seen him in good times and bad; he’s spoken to his friends and enemies; he’s witnessed the plots against him and the near adulation he can get from parts of the Catholic world often forgotten by the Vatican powerhouse; and, above all, he notes Francis’ impatience with the conservative mantra, so often used to oppose reform: “It has always been done like this.”

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User Comments (1)

Comment by: John Hamilton
Posted: 01/06/2020 17:11:54
How do I order a copy of "The Outsider: Pope Francis and His Battle to Reform the Church" via The Tablet?
This website has defeated my attempts to place an order (and to make a small contribution to The Tablet, rather than Amazon).