Leadership Conversations with Nicky Gumbel Podcast: Cardinal Luis Tagle

For this conversation, we are sharing a favorite from the Leadership Conference archives. This is Nicky’s conversation with Cardinal Luis Tagle from 2017. In this podcast, Cardinal Luis Tagle discusses not taking yourself too seriously, the power of storytelling & what helps him hold leadership lightly.

For today’s conversation, we are sharing a favorite from the Leadership Conference archives. This is Nicky’s conversation with Cardinal Luis Tagle from 2017.

To grow in love and respect for Cardinal Tagle, you need only watch him speak for a few moments. The audio of this interview doesn’t quite do justice to showing the joyful man he is. Cardinal Tagle is profoundly emotional – easily caught with an ear-to-ear smile on his face, or empathetic tears in his eyes. And in this conversation, Nicky brilliantly draws wisdom from the deep well of this experienced Christian leader.

Nicky begins by asking Cardinal Tagle how he was able to organize an event with Pope Francis that hosted over 6 million people. The Cardinal laughs his way through a response, explaining the complexities of such an endeavour, ultimately bringing focus to the Holy Spirit as the one who orchestrated it. With the Cardinal’s laugh and grin as his prompter, Nicky asks why the Cardinal maintains such a humorous and light disposition with such great responsibility on his shoulders. Cardinal Tagle responds thoughtfully with an answer grounded in the gospel. “I am not the saviour of the world. The Savior has already come. So, I can laugh at my own mistakes. I take Jesus seriously, but I take myself and other things lightly,” he says.

Cardinal Tagle goes on to talk about the difficult duty of pastoring people in the midst of suffering. He honestly explains his inclination to try and solve people’s problems, and with great empathy, shares that most people don’t need that. “Problems need solutions, but dilemmas require the finding of meaning. Most people come with dilemmas” says the Cardinal. He exhorts those who are in a position of helping the sufferer, to help them find meaning in their hurt, instead of pining only after solutions.

The remainder of the interview contains a tear-jerking story that Cardinal recounts about the Pope in the Philippines, the challenge he often gives to the business leaders he encounters, and the importance of looking for Jesus’ presence and hope in suffering. From start to finish, this interview brims with practical wisdom, deep theological insight and emotive stories making it a must listen for any leader looking to put Christ at the centre of their leadership.

We hope you enjoy Nicky’s conversation with Cardinal Luis Tagle.


Show Notes

Leadership Conference

Caritas Internationalis

Catholic Biblical Federation


Cardinal Luis Tagle is currently living in Rome working as the Prefect of the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples. He was the 32nd Archbishop of Manila from 2011 to 2020. Today he also serves as the president of Caritas International, a federation of Catholic relief, development, and social service organizations, and of the Catholic Biblical Federation. More recently in 2021, he has become a member of the Administration of the Patrimony of the Holy See.

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