Foremost expert on the Catholic Church, George Weigel, is an acclaimed scholar and Church analyst. Right after recording this podcast he took off for Rome to cover the controversial three-week Amazon Synod, or meeting of Bishops, going on at the Vatican. Although we briefly discuss the synod,  George has bigger things on his agenda, like the past 250 years of Catholic Church history and why we should look at four very important events in those years that have had a profound influence on the Church today. First, in 1849  a Pope's first step on U.S Sovereign soil;  Next,  the resulting document of the Second Vatican Council in 1965; Third, John Paul II's return to Poland in 1979 giving a fiery sermon in an in-your-face moment to Communist leaders; and finally,  in 2007, a little known document coming from a gathering of  Church leaders in Brazil... one of the chief signatories, Archbishop Jorge Bergoglio, who would in a few years become Pope Francis.  George lays it all out in his  new book, "The Irony of Modern Catholic History: How the Church Rediscovered  Itself & Challenged the Modern World to Reform."  Just listening to George speak will make you feel smarter and much more well informed about what's happening in the Catholic Church, and why it matters.