Pope Francis Chosen As Time’s Person Of The Year

Pope Francis at Vargihna. Image: Tânia Rêgo/ABr
Pope Francis at Vargihna. Image: Tânia Rêgo/ABr

Time Magazine has named Pope Francis its “Person of the Year” for 2013.

The magazine has been handing out the honour each year since 1927.

Time chose the pope “for his strong leadership, humility and concern for the poor.” They said he has “brought new energy to the church.”

On March 13, 2013, the Catholic Church chose Argentinian-born Jorge Mario Bergoglio to be its new pope; he later selected the name Pope Francis.

The pope lives simply, in a modest apartment. He drives around in a 30-year-old vehicle, although he could—as past popes have done—own expensive cars.

Pope Francis, 77, strongly believes in helping the poor.

In a video on Time Magazine’s website (see the video below), Time’s Howard Chua-Eoan explained why they chose Pope Francis:

The fact that he has given so many people so much hope and inspiration in the last nine months—it’s only been nine month… no one else has done that this year. And for that alone, for changing the way we think about the church and seemingly (being) able to shift this 2,000-year-old instition… he is Person of the Year.

It is the third time Time Magazine has chosen a pope as its person of the year.

Recent past winners include:

2012: U. S. President Barack Obama

2011: “The Protester” (meaning people around the world who have affected change by protesting.)

2010: Mark Zuckerberg, who founded Facebook.

Here is a video (2:56) from Time Magazine about why they chose Pope Francis.

Related links

View past Time Magazine people of the year selections on the CBC News website.

Read about Pope Francis on Time Magazine’s website.

A wonderful behind-the-scenes article on how Time Magazine‘s cover (painting of Pope Francis) came together.

By Kathleen Tilly

Writing/Discussion Prompt
This year, Pope Francis was declared Time’s “Person of the Year.” Last year, it was U.S. President, Barack Obama. The year before it was “the protester” and in 2010, it was Mark Zuckerberg – the founder of Facebook.

What do all of these people have in common? Why do you think they were all given this honour?

Reading Prompt: Making Meaning/Interpreting Texts
Time Magazine probably created a committee in order to determine the person of the year. In order to do this, they may have first created a short list of important people in 2013 and then they had to determine a winner. What criteria do you think they used to create the short list? What criteria do you think they used to pick the winner?

Use stated and implied ideas in texts to make inferences and construct meaning (OME, Reading: 1.5).

Develop and explain interpretations of increasingly complex or difficult texts using stated and implied ideas from the texts to support their interpretations (OME, Reading: 1.5).

Grammar Feature: Titles
Pope Francis was given the title: Time’s “Person of the Year”. Often the first letter of each word in a title is capitalized. This shows that it is a proper noun – a specific person, place or thing – and that it is important. However, the words “of” and “the” are not capitalized in Time’s title. Why not?