Pope Francis has put a "much higher emphasis" on how global economics affects the poor than previous pontiffs according to Eric LeCompte, executive director of charity Jubilee USA that lobbies for a fairer economic policies and financial reforms to benefit the poor and acts as an adviser to the Vatican on issues surrounding the economy.
Global recession and poverty seen in major Catholic hubs across the globe has naturally dented some churches' coffers, but he stressed that the pope was more concerned about issues such as tax havens, corporate tax avoidance, illicit financial flows and corruption than donations.
"Well there is no doubt when you look at the island of Puerto Rico, an island of 4 million people, in the past few years alone because of the economic crisis, 500,000 people left," LeCompte told CNBC.
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"Half a million people and for a Catholic island like Puerto Rico, when people aren't in the pews they are definitely feeling that in the alms bucket, so I think that is a reality. But I think the church's concern is primarily on tax trade issues – so many people are living in poverty as a result of these policies that are legalised and put in place," he said.
Shrinking church attendance across the U.S. has also been hard ignore, with data showing the share of U.S. Catholics who reported attending Mass at least weekly fell by nearly half – from 47 percent to 24 percent – between 1974 and 2012, according to the General Social Survey (GSS).
The pope's visit comes ahead of the start an "extraordinary jubilee" year for the church commencing in December, a special year called by the church to receive blessing and pardon from God and to forgive debts.
The Catholic church calls jubilee years every 25 or 50 years and has also called special jubilee years from time to time, known as extraordinary jubilee years.
LeCompte, who attends meetings with the pope on occasion said he was resolute that the church must do everything it can to convince world leaders to act on world poverty.
"I have heard him say very clearly in meetings, that if the Catholic church is unable to convince world leaders to do everything they can to create a more sustainable economy, to address poverty and inequality, he thinks the Catholic church should sell everything and give it to the poor. I don't think that will actually happen, but that is how strongly he is making these statements," he added.