A Letter From The Publisher, Oct. 9, 1978

The starkly empty red shoes on the cover of this week's TIME were those of Pope John Paul I, who died so suddenly last week and brought crisis once again to the Roman Catholic Church. Our cover story is TIME'S 15th on the papacy, a series that began on June 16,1924, with Pope Pius XI.

Covering religion in depth has been a special charge of TIME since the magazine began in 1923 and Co-Founder Henry Luce wrote that religious currents were "more important perhaps than Farm Blocs or youthful novelists, [and] are lost sight of by the reader of the daily...

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