A Gentle Reminder from Pope Francis That Life Goes By Fast – Inaccurate Attribution!

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A Gentle Reminder from Pope Francis That Life Goes By Fast – Inaccurate Attribution!

Summary of eRumor:

A Facebook post dubbed “A Gentle Reminder from Pope Francis” talks about how life goes by fast, and the need to focus on what’s really important.

The Truth:

“A Gentle Reminder From Pope Francis” is an inspirational read — but Pope Francis didn’t write it. A doctor from the Philippines posted the writing in August 2017, and Pope Francis’ name was attached to it later.
Hundreds of thousands of people shared, liked and commented on the commentary, which helped it go viral. Catholic groups embraced it, too. Churches have printed “A Gentle Reminder from Pope Francis” in church bulletins, and religious groups around the world have posted it on social media and websites.
But we couldn’t find published writings by Pope Francis that resemble the Gentle Reminder post. And, again, early versions of the commentary did not list Pope Francis as the author. That suggests his name was added after the fact to make the post more powerful, or to boost its visibility.

Where Did “A Gentle Reminder from Pope Francis” Come From?

The earliest version of the commentary that we could find appeared at a Facebook account operated by a doctor in the Philippines on August 10, 2017.

Early versions of the “A Gentle Reminder from Pope Francis” commentary do not list Pope Francis as the author.


The post does not list an author. Other online sources refer to a second Pilipino doctor who wrote the commentary, but we weren’t able to track down an earlier version. The post was first labeled a “A Gentle Reminder from Pope Francis” by a religious travel agency a few days later. That post has since been deleted.

The first version of “A Gentle Reminder from Pope Francis” appeared days after the commentary was originally posted.


We’re calling this one “incorrect attribution” because there’s no record of “A Gentle Reminder from Pope Francis” in his published writings, and the pope’s name wasn’t attached to early versions.