The 4-episode miniseries is based on reflections of Pope Francis and the testimony of seniors.
There is “something missing in someone who is not able to dream,” Pope Francis says in excerpts from an interview with Jesuit priest Antonio Spadaro, published on December 24, 2021, by Il Fatto quotidiano. In a preview of a Netflix series devoted to testimonies of senior citizens, the pope meditates on fatherhood and the “struggle” of life.
This interview is from the Netflix series Stories of a Generation, based on the pope’s book Sharing the Wisdom of Time (2018). The four episodes, built around the testimony of older people and reflections of the head of the Catholic Church, became accessible on the famous streaming platform on December 25, 2021.
In the series, the Argentine pontiff pays tribute to director Martin Scorsese’s love for his wife: “When Scorsese came with his wife (in 2016, ed.), she was sick, and he was a big star, but he said, ‘She is the one I care about, she is more important than all my successes […].’ It was a priority […]. It showed his love. That deserves more awards than for his films, which are exceptional.”
In the course of the conversation, the pope meditates on fatherhood, which does not simply consist in begetting a child. What makes you a father, Pope Francis believes, “is the commitment to the existence, limits, greatness, and development of a person to whom you have given life.”
“More lazy than fighting”
“Older people who are dreamers can take you to horizons you can’t imagine,” says the pope, who just turned 85. He himself described himself as a “dreamer” in his youth, writing poetry, then tearing it up, unsatisfied.
The heart of an elderly person who does not dream “hardens,” the pontiff warns, believing that “there is something missing in someone who is not able to dream.” He lacks “the smiles and the sparkle in the eyes.”
“By nature,” the pope confided to the Jesuit who interviewed him, “I am more lazy than combative. If I can avoid a fight, I do it.” Disciplining a person is “very difficult” for him, he confesses: “I don’t like it, but there can’t be life without struggle.” And he says: “You are never too old to fight for what you carry within you, and for which you have risked your life, if you have an open heart and soul.”
The Argentine pontiff also evoked the tango dance, which, according to him, transmits “hope in the future.” And he shares a memory of his first experience of the working world, when his father sent him at the age of 12 to clean in a sock factory. It was there that he experienced the “dignity” of work, he says.