In recent weeks debate has erupted over whether there are two popes sharing authority in the church, or whether Francis is the sole successor of St. Peter.
Referring to businesses that hire employees on part-time contracts so they don't have to provide health and pension benefits, Francis said that was akin to sucking the blood from their workers' veins, leaving them "to eat air."
Pope Francis agreed a women's diaconate should be given more careful consideration, telling hundreds of nuns from around the world that he himself always wondered about the role of deaconesses in the early church.
During his 10-minute address, Sanders slammed the current global financial system and praised Francis’ 2015 encyclical on the environment.
The pontiff spent around 15 minutes in a private conversation with Cook on Jan. 22. Francis regularly meets with dignitaries at the Vatican, but the arrival of the Apple chief raised eyebrows particularly for its timing. Just a week earlier the pope had met with Schmidt, currently executive chairman of Alphabet Inc., parent company of Google, where he served as CEO for a decade.
Prejean met with the pope on Jan. 21 to deliver a thank-you letter from Richard Glossip, whose execution in the U.S. was halted in September after intervention from the pontiff. But her celebratory meeting with the pontiff came just hours after another death row inmate, Richard Masterson, was put to death in Texas.
Francis has made concern for migrants a centerpiece of his papacy, and on Jan. 11 in his annual address to diplomats accredited to the Holy See he again urged governments to “overcome the inevitable fears associated with this massive and formidable phenomenon.”