Reader M. has sent us the translation of the full text of the interview granted by former priest and Liberation Theology master Leonardo Boff to Erich Follath, of German weekly Der Spiegel.
S: Professor Boff, were you surprised, ecstatic, or horrified when you heard about who was elected in Rome?
Boff: I had hoped that the new Pope would take the name Francis - and had predicted that it would happen this way. In this sense my reaction was one of great satisfaction, coupled with the hope that something would finally change in this catastrophically antiquated church. For this choice of name is programmatic: Francis of Assisi stands for a church of the poor and the oppressed, for environmental awareness and against great love of pomp and circumstance.
You have reason to believe that Bergoglio is more liberal?
Boff: Yes. For example, a few months ago he explicitly permitted a homosexual couple to adopt a child. He kept in touch with priests who were expelled from the official church because they had gotten married. And no one could ever persuade him to change his position, which was: we have to be on the side of the poor, even if it means opposing the powerful.