Pope Francis 2015 address on Remembering the Golden Rule

In his historic speech to the Congress in 2015, Pope Francis encouraged lawmakers, both in the USA and globally to work cordially towards solving challenges facing their citizens. He emphasized the need for passion and compassion among leaders across the globe. The Pope called out all leaders to formulate laws that would help address and alleviate problems of hunger and war. His primary focus was directed at critical issues such as migration and immigration into Europe, abortion, trade in arms, religious extremism, poverty, and the death penalty (Neuman, para 2). Leaders propagate some of these challenges through the introduction of bad laws that uphold the status quo. His speech expresses the belief that politicians and leaders have the responsibility of doing unto others as they would have them do unto them to enable all human beings to live with harmony and attain success. Unfortunately, most leaders and lawmakers make laws that favor them at the expense of the poor civilians. The selfish act is evident in cases of corruption or laws that sideline the marginalized groups of people such as immigrants and those in need.

According to O’Connell, the success of a leader is determined by their ability to create positive change to the society and other parameters that improve the quality of life (13). The beneficial change includes having a positive impact on the economic condition of society, while also promoting environmental conservation. The achievement of these favorable outcomes is pegged on good laws and a stable political environment. Therefore, it is the role of the politicians to facilitate the accomplishment of a situation that will support the realization of high-quality life for everyone regardless of their class or social position in society. Some leaders misuse their power for personal gains or to promote nepotism among other vices that consistently disadvantage others. If the same laws applied to the leaders, they would reject it and term it exploitive. The unfavorable laws created by leaders form an intense working relationship with their servants which impact negatively on the organization.

Pope Francis emphasized that leaders should treat their servants with the same compassion and passion with which they would want to be addressed. He equally encourages them to wish for others the same favors and possibilities that they can seek for themselves. Leaders have to remember their obligation to the people they serve. Unfortunately, most leaders and lawmakers make laws that favor them at the expense of the poor civilians. Leaders have to internalize the Golden Rule approach to leadership in addition to the ethics of reciprocity (Holden, 8). To achieve this, a leader has first to possess the intent to do what is right for others and then do it. Leaders have first to identify their critical leadership values, have a compelling vision that will derive positive outcome for all, influence relationships based on credibility and trust, dare to change the status quo and communicate the expectations to the servants or followers. A leader or lawmaker who internalizes these values will treat others fairly, and with tolerance, compassion and consideration hence creates a favorable environment for the achievement of organization objectives.

Works Cited

Holden, Philip. Ethics for Managers. London: Routledge, 2017.

Neuman, Scott. ‘I Am Convinced That We Can Make A Difference,’ Pope Tells Congress, 2015. Available at: https://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2015/09/24/443070564/watch-live-pope-francis-poised-to-speak-to-joint-meeting-of-congress

O’Connell, David. God wills it: Presidents and the political use of religion. London: Routledge, 2017.

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