Pope Francis’ North America tour is receiving more billing than any rockstar, actor, or politician in recent memory. In DC alone, anticipation of his trip is at a fever pitch. According to some estimates, the crowds expected to attend a rally with the pontiff will match or exceed those of a Presidential inauguration – a strikingly high amount.
In the context of this visit it is fascinating to consider the foreign policy implications and influence of the Vatican. In particular, Francis’ trip to Cuba is very striking as he has an excellent opportunity to engage in dialogue, not only with the Cuban regime but also foster dialogue between the people of Cuba and that of the United States. The common link of religion in this instance of foreign policy is fascinating, and ostensibly positive. A rare find in a geopolitical world where religion so frequently acts as a wedge between people!