News / Europe

Pope Francis Meets With College of Cardinals

Newly elected Pope Francis I, Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio of Argentina, meets cardinals in the Clementine Hall in a picture released by Osservatore Romano at the Vatican, March 15, 2013.
Newly elected Pope Francis I, Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio of Argentina, meets cardinals in the Clementine Hall in a picture released by Osservatore Romano at the Vatican, March 15, 2013.
VOA News
Pope Francis held an audience Friday with the men who elected him, telling the College of Cardinals not to give way to "pessimism."

The 76-year-old pontiff also told the elderly cardinals who gathered in Vatican City's Clementine Hall to greet him that age is "the seat of the wisdom of life" which should be passed on to young people.

Before his formal installation as pope on Tuesday, Pope Francis, a native of Argentina and the world's first Latin American pope, is also expected to meet with journalists Saturday. On Sunday he will appear at the window of the papal apartment to recite the Angelus prayer with crowds of worshipers in St. Peter's Square below.

Watch related video by VOA's Jeff Seldin:

Vatican Emphasizes Image of a Pope of the Peoplei
X
March 15, 2013 7:34 PM
Enthusiasm over the selection of Pope Francis as leader of the Catholic Church has yet to wane, and the Vatican seems to be using the opportunity to try to cement the pontiff's image as a pope of the people. VOA'S Jeff Seldin has more.

Meanwhile, the Vatican on Friday rejected as "defamatory" accusations that the newly-elected pontiff, the former Jorge Mario Bergoglio, did not do enough to oppose Argentina's 1976-1983 military dictatorship.  

Among charges are that Bergoglio, who was the Jesuit leader in Argentina during that period, failed to protect two fellow Jesuit priests kidnapped and tortured by the junta.

One of the two priests, Francisco Jalics, says he later reconciled with Bergoglio.  The other priest has since died.

Vatican spokesman Federico Lombardi said the accusations were part of a leftist "anti-clerical" campaign and must be rejected.

Pope Francis began his first full day as leader of the world's 1.2 billion Roman Catholics Thursday with prayers and a celebration of Mass with the cardinals who elected him.

He has set the tone for his papacy by wearing simple garments and avoiding the more luxurious trappings of the papacy. Earlier Thursday, he took a plain Vatican car to a basilica devoted to the Virgin Mary to pray. He later stopped by a Vatican hotel to pick up his belongings and paid the bill himself.

Pope Francis's formal inauguration Tuesday will be attended by foreign delegations, including a U.S. delegation led by Vice President Joe Biden, who is a Catholic.

Pope Francis succeeds Benedict, who is now known as pope emeritus.

The new pope, formerly Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio of Argentina, is the first Jesuit - a priest of the Society of Jesus - to be elected to lead the global church and the first of 266 popes throughout the past 2,000 years to take the name Francis.

Argentines are ecstatic about the selection of the first pope from their country, as were Hispanics in the rest of Latin America and elsewhere.

About 40 percent of the world's Catholics live in Latin America, with Brazil and Mexico having the largest Catholic populations.

Pope Francis, like the 13th century saint whose name he has chosen - St. Francis of Assisi - is noted for his humility and commitment to social issues.

The new pope has been criticized in Argentina for his firm opposition to same-sex marriage and abortion. In addition, a complaint was once filed there claiming he failed to denounce atrocities committed by Argentina's military government between 1976 and 1983.


  • Pope Francis with Argentine President Cristina Fernandez, holding a picture of a plaque commemorating the 1984 peace and friendship treaty between Argentina and Chile, March 18, 2013.
  • Pope Francis and Uruguay's priest Gonzalo Aemilius greet people at the Vatican, March 17, 2013.
  • Pope Francis greets the crowds after conducting a mass in Saint Anna church inside the Vatican, March 17, 2013.
  • Pope Francis appears at the window of his future private apartment to bless the faithful, gathered below in St. Peter's Square, during the Sunday Angelus prayer at the Vatican March 17, 2013.
  • Pope Francis conducts a mass in Santa Anna church inside the Vatican, March 17, 2013.
  • Pope Francis leaves the Paul VI hall with security at the Vatican, March 16, 2013.
  • Pope Francis checks out of the church-run residence where he had been staying in Rome before becoming pontiff, March, 14, 2013. (Osservatore Romano)
  • Key chains featuring images of the newly-elected Pope Francis are displayed in a tourist shop near the Vatican in Rome, March 15, 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.
  • Newly elected Pope Francis waves from the steps of the Santa Maria Maggiore Basilica in Rome, March 14, 2013.
  • Newly elected Pope Francis walks in the Basilica of Santa Maria Maggiore during a private visit in Rome, March 14, 2013.
  • Newly elected Pope Francis makes a private visit to the 5th-century Basilica of Santa Maria Maggiore, in a photo released by Osservatore Romano in Rome, March 14, 2013.
  • A nun takes a photograph of the first batch of souvenirs adorned with freshly-printed pictures of the newly-elected Pope Francis in a shop at the Vatican, March 14, 2013.

Pope Francis succeeds Benedict, who is now known as pope emeritus.

The new pope, formerly Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio of Argentina, is the first Jesuit - a priest of the Society of Jesus - to be elected to lead the global church and the first of 266 popes throughout the past 2,000 years to take the name Francis.

Argentines are ecstatic about the selection of the first pope from their country, as were Hispanics in the rest of Latin America and elsewhere.

About 40 percent of the world's Catholics live in Latin America, with Brazil and Mexico having the largest Catholic populations.

Pope Francis, like the 13th century saint whose name he has chosen, St. Francis of Assisi, is noted for his humility and commitment to social issues.

The new pope has been criticized in Argentina for his firm opposition to same-sex marriage and abortion. In addition, a complaint was once filed there claiming he failed to denounce atrocities committed by Argentina's military government between 1976 and 1983.

Some information for this report was provided by AP and Reuters.

You May Like

Analyst: Joint-Arab Military Force Poses Perilous Challenge

Although international forces are desperately needed to counter the threat of the Islamic State group, analysts say conflicting alliances could escalate fighting More

Asia’s Middle Class Changes Demand for Wheat Grain Exporters

Changes in tastes and diets are boon for wheat exporters such as Australia and the United States More

S. African Comedian Taking Over Popular TV Show

Mixed-race comedian Trevor Noah, who is loved for his edgy jibes about race and language, is taking the helm from Jon Stewart at The Daily Show in US More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Film Tells Story of Musicians in Mali Threatened by Jihadistsi
X
Greg Flakus
March 30, 2015 6:48 PM
At this year's annual South by Southwest film and music festival in Austin, Texas, some musicians from Mali were on hand to promote a film about how their lives were upturned by jihadists who destroyed ancient treasures in the city of Timbuktu and prohibited anyone from playing music under threat of death. As VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Austin, some are afraid to return to their hometowns even though the jihadists are no longer in control there.
Video

Video Film Tells Story of Musicians in Mali Threatened by Jihadists

At this year's annual South by Southwest film and music festival in Austin, Texas, some musicians from Mali were on hand to promote a film about how their lives were upturned by jihadists who destroyed ancient treasures in the city of Timbuktu and prohibited anyone from playing music under threat of death. As VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Austin, some are afraid to return to their hometowns even though the jihadists are no longer in control there.
Video

Video With Coalition Airstrikes, Iraq Entering 'Last Page' of IS Battle

American warplanes joined Iraq's battle against the so-called 'Islamic State' in northern Iraq late Wednesday, as Iraqi ground troops launched a massive assault on Tikrit. Analysts say the offensive could take the coalition a step further towards Mosul, the largest city held by Islamic State forces. Others say it could also deepen already-dangerous sectarian tensions in the region. VOA's Heather Murdock has more from Cairo.
Video

Video Philippines Wants Tourists Spending Money at New Casinos

Tourism is a multi-billion dollar industry in the Philippines. Close to five million foreign visitors traveled there last year, perhaps lured by the country’s tropical beaches. But Jason Strother reports from Manila that the country hopes to entice more travelers to stay indoors and spend money inside new casinos.
Video

Video Civilian Casualties Push Men to Join Rebels in Ukraine

The continued fighting in eastern Ukraine and the shelling of civilian neighborhoods seem to be pushing more men to join the separatist fighters. Many of the new recruits are residents of Ukraine made bitter by new grievances, as well as old. VOA's Patrick Wells reports.
Video

Video Islamic State Prisoners Talk of Curiosity, God, Regret

Islamic State fighter, a prisoner of Kurdish YPG forces, asked his family asking for forgiveness: "I destroyed myself and I destroyed them along with me." The Syrian youth was one of two detainees who spoke to VOA’s Kurdish Service about the path they chose; their names have been changed and identifying details obscured. VOA's Zana Omer reports.
Video

Video Germanwings Findings Raise Issue of Psychological Testing for Pilots

More is being discovered about the co-pilot in the crash of Germanwings Flight 9525 in the French Alps. Investigators say he was hiding a medical condition, raising questions about the mental qualifications of pilots. VOA's Carolyn Presutti reports.
Video

Video Hi-tech Motorbike Helmet's Goal: Improve Road Safety

In cities with heavily congested traffic, people can get around much faster on a motorcycle than in a car. But a rider who is not sure of his route may have to stop to look at the map or consult a GPS. A Russian start-up company is working to make navigation easier for motorcyclists. Designers at Moscow-based LiveMap are developing a smart helmet with a built-in navigation system, head-mounted display and voice recognition. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video DOJ: Illinois National Guard Soldier Tried to Join ISIS

U.S. federal law enforcement agents arrested two suburban Chicago men accused of trying to join ISIS overseas, while also plotting attacks in the United States. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports from the Midwest state of Illinois, one of those arrested is a soldier of the Illinois National Guard.
Video

Video New Wheelchair Is Easier to Use, Increases Mobility

Traditional push-rim wheelchairs create a lot of stress for arm, shoulder and neck muscles and joints. A redesigned chair, based on readily available bicycle technology, radically increases mobility while reducing the physical effort. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grieving

Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Cambodian Land Grabs Threaten Traditional Communities

Indigenous communities in Cambodia's Ratanakiri province say the government’s economic land concession policy is taking away their land and traditional way of life, making many fear that their identity will soon be lost. Local authorities, though, have denied this is the case. VOA's Say Mony went to investigate and filed this report, narrated by Colin Lovett.
Video

Video Space Program Status Disappoints 'Last Man on the Moon'

One of the films that drew big crowds last week at the annual South by Southwest festival in Austin, Texas, tells the story of the last human being to stand on the moon, U.S. astronaut Eugene Cernan. It has been 42 years since Cernan returned from the moon and he laments that no one else has gone there since. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports.

VOA Blogs

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