Pope Francis: First Pope from the New World

Posted on April 23, 2013 by


The Catholic Church was shocked when Pope Benedict XVI formally resigned on 28 February 2013.

For a short period of time, the world was Popeless.

This chaotic stretch of time generated a lot of suspense as cardinals voted on whom to elect as the new Pope.

After several days of waiting anxiously, white smoke rose from the Vatican in Rome to signify the cardinals had come to a decision.

The new pope is Jorge Bergoglio, or Pope Francis, which surprised many. He is the first pope from South America as well as the first Pope to choose the name Francis.

Equally surprising was Pope Benedict’s decision to resign as pope. He is the first Pope to do this since 1406. Benedict made this controversial decision due to his old age and waning physical health.

Pope Francis has a rich history and a blue-collar background. Born in Argentina, his parents were Italian immigrants, and his father was a railroad worker. Barrack Obama has called Francis a “champion of the poor and the most venerable among us.”

In addition to being the first Pope from the New World, he is also the first pope to be a Jesuit. Also known as the Society of Jesus, this branch of the Catholic Church is known for being militaristic. In fact, their nickname is “God’s Marines.” They also take vows of poverty, chastity, and obedience.

Pope Francis will face many challenges in his new job. The Catholic Church has been beset by controversy in the past year, including sexual allegations made against priests.

Francis hopes to breathe some fresh air into the system and clear the somewhat tainted name of the Catholic Church worldwide.

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