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    Argentina’s Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio becomes Pope Francis – Updated

    Argentina’s Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio becomes Pope Francis – Updated

    I came back from an appointment to find that white smoke was wafting from the Vatican Chimney.

    Pope Francis 2

    From the Globe and Mail:

    Argentine cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio will be known as Francis.

    At 7:07 p.m., local time, white smoke billowed from the Sistine Chapel, signalling that a new pope had been elected after only two days of voting and five ballots. It came as a surprise, because there was no frontrunner going into the conclave and Vatican watchers had expected another day of voting after two inconclusive votes this morning.

    St. Peter’s Square erupted in shouts and cheers and clapping when the white smoke emerged. The bells of St. Peter’s basilica began to ring immediately after the white smoke went up.

    The crowd went wild with enthusiasm. Andrea Mascetti, 27, a Roman lawyer, could not believe his luck. He arrived in the square only minutes before the smoke was spotted. “I was just in time, ” he said. “We just saw history.”

    At 8:12 p.m., local time, French Cardinal Jean-Louis Tauran emerged onto the balcony facing St. Peter’s Square to announce the identity of Francis.

    Elected on the fifth ballot, he was chosen in one of the fastest conclaves in years, remarkable given there was no clear front-runner going into the vote and that the church had been in turmoil following the upheaval unleashed by Pope BenedictXVI’s surprise resignation.

    My son and I became Catholics in 2010, so this is the first “new Pope” we have seen elected as members of the faith. We are both watching Pope Francis’ first address on Fox News, and Blake commented that there was no number after his name.

    It is said that the name the Pope takes is significantly historically and spiritually. For example, blessed John Paul II took his papal name to honor his immediate predecessor. It will be interesting to see which Catholic “Francis” that the new Pope wanted to honor: St. Francis of Assisi, the animal-loving Italian friar who is one of the most venerated religious figures in history, or perhaps St. Francis Xavier, who was known for his missionary work and co-founded the Society of Jesus (aka Jesuits).

    Both of these saints shook up their world, and it is said that the the former Argentine Cardinal is a potential reformer. The new Pope is the first from the Americas, which seems to indicate that “inclusion” incorporating the dynamic church in Latin America was an aspect guiding the final conclave vote.

    Pope Francis is known for his humility. During his initial address, the Pope bent down and asked the people to pray for him.

    As Cardinal, Bergoglio became known for personal humility, doctrinal conservatism and a commitment to social justice. A simple lifestyle has contributed to his reputation for humility. He lives in a small apartment, rather than in the palatial bishop’s residence. He gave up his chauffeured limousine in favor of public transportation, and he reportedly cooks his own meals.

    And, indeed, my son and I are. Pope Francis has much hard work ahead. God bless and keep him, and all people who are following today’s news.



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    A truly humble spirit! Love the choice from I know right now……….

    For the record, St. Francis Xavier was a founder of the Society of Jesus, the Jesuits.

    Some notes : For centuries until J.P. II the Popes were native Italians. Francis being the 1st Pope from outside Europe is of Italian heritage. Now with 3 non Italian born Popes it shows the historical shift in the Church but at the same time its continuity with the choice of Francis of Italian heritage. I find it interesting his 1st message was laden with references to him being the Bishop of Rome. Americans are so America centric we have little sense of history. With 2000 years of history the Catholic Church is very aware of history. I note to anyone reading these posts Francis is every bit an.American as any of us.

    I became Catholic in the late 1980’s. I’m very happy with the outcome and think it bodes well for drawing Latin America away from the “Godless Marxists”, and I especially love St. Francis for his work with animals and hope this is a sign there will more help for them (thinking of the Asian dog meat trade where they are grabbed, stuffed into communal tight cages piled on top of each other, and then skinned and boiled alive).

    SteveT | March 13, 2013 at 7:07 pm

    We have video of Pope Francis I FIRST PUBLIC APPEARANCE posted now on CC…

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