White Smoke, Bells, New Pope!

It’s a damp, cold night in Rome. But it is not stopping the thousands gathered, that have been waiting, cheering, praying, the hopeful crowds!

The Dean of Cardinals has recently appeared in the balcony window, and announced:

“I announce to you news of great joy.  We have a Pope! …who takes the name Francisco (Francis)”

He is the 1st Pope from Latin America.  He hails from Argentina, the Archbishop of Buenos Aires. Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio. WOW. (Photo credit: CNS)

Francis I
The well-respected Cardinal Edward Egan (Archbishop Emeritus of New York), says of him, “A man who calmly stands for what is right and just…have immense admiration for him, and I think you are going to like him a lot….He’s a very smart man, who will know how to govern…and appoint people who are capable.”

He stepped to the microphone and says, “Buena sera” and the crowd went wild!

What great humility he showed when he began by saying, “I would like to say a prayer for our Bishop Emeritus Benedict XVI,” and proceeded to lead us in saying the Our Father and Hail Mary in Latin.

His second request, “I’d like to ask you to ask the Lord to bless the Bishop,” beseeching the crowds to pray in silence for him.

In a true moment of humility, he bowed down as we, the Church, asked God to bless him as our new Shepherd.

“I’m here to evangelize the city of Rome,” he told the people. BOOM!

And a great blessing was then imparted by our new Holy Father. It was an electrifying moment to see him in his shiny new Pope garb, beginning his new role of leadership in the Church.

One more time he grabs the microphone before departing.

“I leave, thank you very much for your welcoming, pray for me, and I will see you soon…I will pray to the Virgin Mary so she keeps Rome…”

His first appearance has left me this impression that he has a heart of an evangelizer, passionate about the message of the Gospel, very personable, warm, and humble, a snappy dresser, and had a great Italian accent. A Jesuit, he is sure to be an intellectual.  I heard he was very much a follower of John Paul II, and thought to be “too orthodox by some” with a great love for the poor — ’nuff said. WOOT WOOT.

Was it not to St. Francis that God said many years ago, ‎”Francis, go and repair my house, which as you see is falling into ruin.”

As Catholics, we do not believe in coincidence. It is providential that he bears the name Francis, that he is from Latin America, and possesses an amazingly simple, humble spirit.  As another Franciscan buddy, Chris Stefanick, posted today,

As Cardinal he cooked for himself, took the bus to work, refused to live in a palace but lived in an apartment instead.
He is a STRONG and clear moral teacher, unafraid to tackle issues like gay marriage…yet he embodied a spirit of service and of mercy. He showed up at an AIDS hospice to wash the feet of the patients there.
Folks, I think we’ll have a Canonizable Pope here. Glory be to God.

I did not expect to be so emotional, but it was a great moment. A very exciting time for the Church indeed!

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2 thoughts on “White Smoke, Bells, New Pope!

  1. Helen Zamora says:

    Very exciting, Lisa! You captured all that I wanted to keep in my memory for this wonderful Bishop the Cardinals have elected. Cardinal Egan was so excited for Pope Francis’ election – what he expressed was excitement for him – a complete blessing and so glad we got to hear someone that knows him and all that he has done while in Buenos Aires. Egan also expressed his envy that Cardinal Dolan was going to be at the church with the Pope tomorrow – a favorite place of prayer for him.
    Exciting indeed!


    • Lisa says:

      Thanks so much, Helen. Part of me wanted to just bask in this historic moment, but I had my laptop on the couch feverishly typing, knowing that I too wanted more so to capture not only what was being said, but the feeling, the atmosphere, the response. Yes, yes, what an amazing day! Habemus Papam!


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