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Timothy Dolan

Cardinal Timothy Dolan, right, a St. Louis Cardinals fan, laughs as he talks with an unidentified friend while watching the New York Mets face the Cardinals in a baseball game against the New York Mets in New York, Monday, April 21, 2014. (AP Photo/Kathy Willens)

In case you missed it over the holiday weekend, The New York Times ran a really interesting story on Cardinal Timothy Dolan, former auxiliary bishop of St. Louis.

Dolan, now the archbishop of New York, with his conservatism, yet gregarious personality, was once considered a possible candidate for pope himself. Instead, Dolan is now having to contend with the age of Pope Francis, what with his commitment to living a humble life and serving the poor, and his attempts to lessen the emphasis on divisive social issues such as gay marriage and abortion.

So, reporter Sharon Otterman wonders, how is Dolan dealing with this change in tone?

Dolan claims he has more or less stayed the same. Others, however, have noticed subtle differences in the way Dolan conducts himself. They also suggest that Dolan's influence may be waning as the effect Francis has on the church grows.

One example?

“Two years ago, Cardinal Dolan’s most-quoted comments on the subject of same-sex marriage were ones in which he said he felt “betrayed” and “burned” by the New York Legislature for not giving him more notice before legalizing it. But two months ago, when asked on television how he felt about Michael Sam’s becoming the first openly gay player in the National Football League, he expressed enthusiasm.”

“'Good for him,' Cardinal Dolan told David Gregory on “Meet the Press” on NBC. 'Look, the same Bible that teaches us about the virtue of chastity and fidelity in marriage also teaches us not to judge people,' he added, echoing Francis. 'So I would say, ‘Bravo.’"