New Pope Francis: Saucon Valley Reacts
The new Pope is Argentine Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio, 76, who has chosen the name Francis.
Editor's Note: This article has been updated.
After deliberation, the Roman Catholic Conclave in the Vatican City has elected Argentine Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio, 76, to be the new Pope. He has chosen the name Pope Francis.
Shortly after the news, Saucon Valley readers reacted on Hellertown Patch's Facebook page:
"Pope Francis appears to be a humble man," wrote Mary Anne Looby. "Asking for the blessing and prayers of the people of Rome before offering his blessing upon them was beautiful to see. I think most of us Catholics want to see a church that is more modern. We love our traditions, as any faith would, but times have changed and the church has to become more understanding."
Wrote Joie Gates: "It's about time the Boys Club in Rome elected a non-European as Pope."
And Allan Bach said: "The Catholic Church is built on Tradition and Scripture. A more modern Church is not what is needed—rather a return to the values that are the foundation of the faith. Responsible leadership is necessary. Let us move toward a more Christ-like Church."
Bergoglio is the first Jesuit—and the first person from Latin America—to be named pope.
He has spent nearly his entire career in Argentina, and according to published reports he has lived modestly, taking the bus to work, cooking his own meals and opting to live in an apartment.
ABC News Online reported that he is considered a champion of social justice in his country. He also is a conservative, strongly opposing abortion, same-sex marriage and contraception, ABC News reported.
Bergoglio stepped out onto the balcony of St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome at 3:22pm Wednesday (8:22pm in Rome) to cheering crowds. Just a little over an hour earlier, white smoke had arisen from atop the Sistine Chapel, indicating that the Roman Catholic cardinals had elected a new pope.
Bergoglio succeeds Pope Benedict XVI, who resigned Feb. 28 and was the first pope to do so in 600 years. He cited advanced age.