Pope Francis carries his crosier after celebrating Mass in the piazza outside the Basilica of St. Francis in Assisi, Italy, Oct. 4. The pontiff was making his first pilgrimage as pope to the birthplace of his papal namesake. Photo by Paul Haring/Catholic News Service

Pope Francis shrugs off Marxist label

(RNS) Pope Francis, who made headlines in recent weeks by lambasting ‘trickle down” economic theories as unfair to the poor, is shrugging off criticism from political conservatives who dubbed him a Marxist.