News / Europe

Cardinals Break with Tradition in Selection of New Pontiff

In this image made from video provided by CTV, Pope Francis celebrates his inaugural Mass with cardinals inside the Sistine Chapel at the Vatican, March 14, 2013.In this image made from video provided by CTV, Pope Francis celebrates his inaugural Mass with cardinals inside the Sistine Chapel at the Vatican, March 14, 2013.
x
In this image made from video provided by CTV, Pope Francis celebrates his inaugural Mass with cardinals inside the Sistine Chapel at the Vatican, March 14, 2013.
In this image made from video provided by CTV, Pope Francis celebrates his inaugural Mass with cardinals inside the Sistine Chapel at the Vatican, March 14, 2013.
Roman Catholic cardinals have broken with tradition, electing a pope who is not from Europe, the first from Latin America and the first Jesuit.

Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio, 76, Archbishop of Buenos Aires, Argentina, was elected the 266th pope and has taken the name of Francis.

Church historian Christopher Bellitto, who teaches at Kean University in Union, New Jersey, says the new pope is known for leading a simple life.

“He doesn’t have a chauffeured limousine, he takes a bus to work. He lives in a simple apartment, not an archbishop’s palace,” said Bellitto. “He is known for a simple prayer life. He also seems to cook for himself, every now and again.”

Pontiff Takes Name of Francis

George Ferzoco, professor of theology at Bristol University in England says the name a new pontiff takes is an important sign.

Related video report by Carolyn Presutti
Pope's Jesuit Order Shuns Higher Officei
X
March 15, 2013 12:09 AM
Pope Francis, the new leader of the Roman Catholic Church, is the first Jesuit pontiff. The Jesuits were pioneers in globalization - and their mission is information. They have founded universities around the world, including Georgetown University in Washington. That’s where we find VOA’s Carolyn Presutti --who tells us how the first Jesuit pope may differ from any other pope in the history of the church.
“For the better part of the century or two, the same limited number of names have come up over and over again. What we have here is an unparalleled choice where we have someone with the name Francis. And it’s not just that this is a new name - it’s what that name signifies,” said Ferzoco. “It’s a saint and a name that reflects that saint who was committed to serving the poorest of the poor, to evangelizing, to spreading the word of the gospel, of service to the church.”

First Jesuit Pope

At the same time, Ferzoco said Francis is the first Jesuit elected to the papacy.

“With choosing someone from Bergoglio’s order, we have someone who has demonstrated from the very beginning of his priesthood a devotion to the papacy. He is absolutely unshakeable in the central power of the church - when I say power, I mean spiritual power,” said Ferzoco. “He is the first Jesuit to be pope and this alone is staggering, when you think that the Jesuit order was founded in the 16th century, very largely as ‘the shock troops of the pope.’ They are the order at the beck and call of the papacy.”

Bellito said both Saint Francis and the founder of the Jesuit order - Saint Ignatius of Loyola - were “company men”- “that is they are going to do what they are told to do but they are going to do those things in very innovative ways.”

Bellitto said it is difficult to predict how Pope Francis will deal with such issues as reforming the Vatican’s bureaucracy known as the Curia.

“A lot of people say 1/3 of the College of Cardinals works in the Curia - turn that around, 2/3 of the College of Cardinals - and 2/3 is what you need to get elected - 2/3 of the College of Cardinals are in dioceses," said Bellitto. “And it looks like they really wanted somebody who has lived working on problems at the church’s grassroots levels.”

Pope Francis succeeds Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI who resigned last month and is currently residing at the popes’ summer residence in Castel Gandolfo.

Andre de Nesnera

Andre de Nesnera is senior analyst at the Voice of America, where he has reported on international affairs for more than three decades. Now serving in Washington D.C., he was previously senior European correspondent based in London, established VOA’s Geneva bureau in 1984 and in 1989 was the first VOA correspondent permanently accredited in the Soviet Union.

You May Like

African States Push to Keep Boko Haram Offline

Central African telecoms ministers working with Nigeria to block all videos posted by Boko Haram in effort to blunt Nigerian militant group's propaganda More

Falling Oil Prices, Internet-Savvy Youth Pose Challenge for Gulf Monarchies

Across the Gulf, younger generations are putting a strain on traditional politics More

Philippines Call Center Workers Face Challenges

Country has world’s largest business process outsourcing, or BPO, industry, employing some one-million workers More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
US Supreme Court Hears Hijab Discrimination Casei
X
Katherine Gypson
February 25, 2015 11:30 PM
The U.S. Supreme Court has heard opening arguments in a workplace religious discrimination case that examines whether a clothing store can refuse to hire a young woman for wearing the headscarf she says is a symbol of her Muslim faith. Katherine Gypson reports from the Supreme Court.
Video

Video US Supreme Court Hears Hijab Discrimination Case

The U.S. Supreme Court has heard opening arguments in a workplace religious discrimination case that examines whether a clothing store can refuse to hire a young woman for wearing the headscarf she says is a symbol of her Muslim faith. Katherine Gypson reports from the Supreme Court.
Video

Video Falling Gas Prices Hurt Nascent Illinois Hydraulic Fracturing Industry

Falling oil prices are helping consumers purchase cheaper petroleum at the pump. But that’s made hydraulic fracturing or “fracking” less economically viable for the companies in the United States invested in the process. VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports on one Midwestern town that was hoping to change its fortunes by cashing in on the next big U.S. oil boom.
Video

Video Fighting in Sudan's South Kordofan Fuels Mass Displacement

Heavy fighting in Sudan's South Kordofan state is causing hundreds of thousands to flee into uncertain conditions. Local aid organizations estimate as many as 400,000 civilians have been internally displaced since the conflict began more than three years ago, while another 250,000 have fled across the border to refugee camps in South Sudan. VOA's Adam Bailes reports.
Video

Video Lao Dam Project Runs Into Opposition

A Lao dam project on a section of the Mekong River is drawing opposition from local fishermen, international environmental groups and neighboring countries. VOA's Say Mony visited the region to investigate the concerns. Colin Lovett narrates.
Video

Video A Filmmaker Discovers Her Biracial Identity in "Little White Lie

Lacey Schwartz grew up in an upper middle-class Jewish family, in a town in upstate New York where almost everyone she knew was white. She assumed that she was, as well. Her recent documentary, Little White Lie, tells the story of how she uncovered the secret of her true racial background. VOA’s Carolyn Weaver has more on the film.
Video

Video Deep Under Antarctic Ice Sheet, Life!

With the end of summer in the Southern hemisphere, the Antarctic research season is over. Scientists from Northern Illinois University are back in their laboratory after a 3-month expedition on the Ross Ice Shelf, the world’s largest floating ice sheet. As VOA’s Rosanne Skirble reports, they hope to find clues to explain the dynamics of the rapidly melting ice and its impact on sea level rise.
Video

Video US-Cuba Normalization Talks Resume Friday

Negotiations aimed at normalizing diplomatic relations between the U.S. and Cuba resume Friday. On the table: lifting a half-century trade embargo and easing banking and travel restrictions. There's opposition in Congress, but some analysts say there may be sufficient political and economic incentives in both nations for a potential breakthrough this year. VOA's Mil Arcega reports.
Video

Video Pakistan's Deadline For SIM Registration Has Cellphone Users Scrambling

Pakistani cell phone users have until midnight Thursday to register their SIM cards, or their service will be cut off. While some privacy experts worry about government intrusion, many Pakistanis are just worried about keeping their phone lines open. VOA Deewa reporter Arshad Muhmand has more from Peshawar.
Video

Video Myanmar Warns Factory Workers to End Strikes

Outside Myanmar's main city Yangon, thousands of workers walked off their jobs earlier this month demanding a doubling of their wages, pay raises after a year and input from labor unions on industrial regulations. Since Friday, the standoff has grown more tense as police moved in to disrupt the sit-ins, resulting in clashes that injured people from both sides. VOA correspondent Steve Herman visited industrial zones which have become a focus of Myanmar's fledgling workers rights movement.
Video

Video Oscar Winners Do More Than Thank the Academy

The Academy Awards presentation is Hollywood’s night to reward the best movies from the previous year. It’s typically a lot of glitter, a lot of thank you’s, a lot of speeches. But many of this year’s speeches carried messages beyond the thank you's. VOA’s Carolyn Presutti takes a look.

All About America

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More