Francis's popularity among progressives suggests that women and gay people are still viewed as appendages in the struggle for a better society.
Pope John Paul II, the charismatic anti-communist who became a religious autocrat, is being fast-tracked to sainthood by the Catholic Church. So what is going on inside the Vatican under the new leadership of Francis?
The pontiff's remarks about the existence of a "gay lobby" in the Vatican draws on a number of age-old homophobic tropes.
The realm of sex and reproduction in particular is an area where the Vatican needs to improve its approach to its female followers.