GMA Hosts Thrilled By Pope's 'Fantastic' Call Not to Proselytize, Ignore Context

On Monday's Good Morning America, hosts Dan Harris and Amy Robach seized on Pope Francis advising against proselytization in a Sunday interview with Argentinian magazine Viva. Harris observed: "...he talks a lot about respecting other people's believes and not proselytizing." Robach gushed: "That's fantastic....there's a reason why he's the people's pope." George Stephanopoulos chimed in: "A lot of wisdom." [Listen to the audio or watch the video after the jump]

The morning show anchors skipped the Pope's full quote, in which he commented on the best method by which to draw people to the Church but didn't abandon the effort to gain converts: "We can inspire others through witness so that one grows together in communicating. But the worst thing of all is religious proselytism, which paralyzes. 'I am talking with you in order to persuade you.' No. The Church grows by attraction, not proselytizing."

Fellow co-host Lara Spencer began the segment by noting:

...some advice from Pope Francis that so many people want to take a look at – his secrets to happiness. And they are quite simple and lovely....many of them focus on having just a positive outlook and respecting others. Carving out time for ourselves. Actually making time for vacation. Making Sundays your time. And focusing a lot of attention on better future – a better future for young people.

Harris immediately highlighted: "I'm surprised, actually, that on his list – and I've looked at the list, you don't prayer or meditation, which is interesting."

Even more interesting was the fact that Harris and Robach hailed the Pontiff when they thought he sounded less religious.


Here is a full transcript of the August 4 segment:

8:18 AM ET

LARA SPENCER: Well, in continuing this feel-good atmosphere, let's talk about this. Also in the Heat Index on this Monday, some advice from Pope Francis that so many people want to take a look at – his secrets to happiness. And they are quite simple and lovely.

His top ten list, if you – to take from Letterman, if you will, this was with an Argentinian magazine, many of them focus on having just a positive outlook and respecting others. Carving out time for ourselves. Actually making time for vacation. Making Sundays your time. And focusing a lot of attention on better future – a better future for young people. And we want to hear from you. What are your secrets to happiness? Tweet us, @GMA with the #SocialSquare. And-

AMY ROBACH: Dan may know something about being 10% happier.

DAN HARRIS: Yes, available at fine bookstores everywhere, yes.

[LAUGHTER]

Yes. I'm surprised, actually, that on his list – and I've looked at the list, you don't prayer or meditation, which is interesting.

SPENCER: No, in fact, he does talk about making Sundays, you know, sort of making it a no-work-day and family time, but he never does mention prayer.

GEORGE STEPHANOPOULOS: That is surprising.

HARRIS: It is also interesting he talks a lot about respecting other people's believes and not proselytizing.

ROBACH: That's fantastic.

HARRIS: Which is very interesting coming from a pope.

ROBACH: Love – there's a reason why he's the people's pope.

HARRIS: People love him.

STEPHANOPOULOS: A lot of wisdom.

Kyle Drennen
Kyle Drennen
Kyle Drennen is a News Analyst for MRC