The Holy See press office is not doing a very good job at getting the "real" Pope Francis out. In fact, the more I read the writings of the Pope, the lower my estimation of these people becomes. How many know about the Pope's views on his "sainted predecessor"? (these very words used by Pope Francis in reference to Benedict a few days ago).
The following was what Francis said of Benedict on the flight back to Italy:
There is one thing that describes my relationship with Benedict: I have such great affection for him. I have always loved him. For me he is a man of God, a humble man, a man of prayer. I was so happy when he was elected Pope. Also, when he resigned, for me it was an example of greatness. A great man. Only a great man does this! A man of God and a man of prayer.
Now he is living in the Vatican, and there are those who tell me: “How can this be? Two Popes in the Vatican! Doesn’t he get in your way? Isn’t he plotting against you?” All these sorts of things, no? I have found a good answer for this: “It’s like having your grandfather in the house”, a wise grandfather. When families have a grandfather at home, he is venerated, he is loved, he is listened to.
Pope Benedict is a man of great prudence. He doesn’t interfere! I have often told him so: “Holiness, receive guests, lead your own life, come along with us”. He did come for the unveiling and blessing of the statue of Saint Michael. So, that phrase says it all. For me it’s like having a grandfather at home: my own father. If I have a difficulty, or something I don’t understand, I can call him on the phone: “Tell me, can I do this?” When I went to talk with him about that big problem, Vatileaks, he told me everything with great simplicity … to be helpful.
There is something I don’t know whether you are aware of – I believe you are, but I’m not certain – when he spoke to us in his farewell address, on 28 February, he said: “In your midst is the next Pope: I promise him obedience”. He is a great man; this is a great man!
Press Conference July 28, 2013