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His Holiness Pope Francis

Pope Francis in August 2014
Papacy began 13 March 2013
Predecessor Benedict XVI
Ordination 13 December 1969
by Ramón José Castellano
Consecration 27 June 1992
by Antonio Quarracino
Created Cardinal 21 February 2001
Personal details
Birth name Jorge Mario Bergoglio
Born 17 December 1936 (1936-12-17) (age 83)
Buenos Aires, Argentina
Nationality Argentine with Vatican City citizenship
Residence Casa Santa Martha
Apostolic Palace
Previous post Provincial Superior of the Society of Jesus in Argentina (1973–1979)
Auxiliary Bishop of Buenos Aires (1992–1997)
Titular Bishop of Auca (1992–1997)
Archbishop of Buenos Aires (1998–2013)
Cardinal-Priest of St. Roberto Bellarmino (2001–2013)
Ordinary of the Ordinariate for the Faithful of the Eastern Rites in Argentina (1998–2013)
President of the Argentine Episcopal Conference (2005–2011)
Motto Miserando atque Eligendo (By having mercy, by choosing Him)[a]
Signature {{{signature_alt}}}
Coat of arms {{{coat_of_arms_alt}}}

Pope Francis (Latin: Franciscus, Italian: Francesco, Spanish: Francisco; born Jorge Mario Bergoglio on 17 December 1936) is the 267th[2][3] and current pope of the Catholic Church. He was elected on 13 March 2013. He chose his name to be Francis.[4][5] The name comes from St. Francis of Assisi.[6] Francis is the first Jesuit pope.[5] He is also the first pope who is not European in more than a millennium.[7] He is the first ever pope from the Americas and the first from the Southern Hemisphere.[8]

Throughout his life, both as an individual and a religious leader, he has been known for his humility, his concern for the poor, and his commitment to dialogue as a way to build bridges between people of all backgrounds, beliefs, and faiths.[9][10][11] Since his election to the papacy, he has shown a simpler and less formal approach to the office, choosing to live in the Vatican guesthouse and not the papal residence.

From 1998 until he was elected as the pope, he was the Archbishop of Buenos Aires.

Early life

Jorge Mario Bergoglio[12] was born in Buenos Aires. He was one of the children of an Italian railway worker.[3] His father was called Mario Bergoglio and his mother was called Regina.

He got a master's degree in philosophy and theology from the University of Buenos Aires. He also holds a master's degree in chemistry from that university.[13] After his studies of philosophy and theology, he moved on and studied at the seminary in Villa Devoto.[14] He entered the Society of Jesus on 11 March 1958.

Career before becoming Pope


Bergoglio became a member of the Society of Jesus in 1958. He was made a priest in 1969. In 1973, he was named "provincial" or head of the Jesuits in Argentina.[15] In the mid-1980's he began work on a doctoral degree at Sankt Georgen Graduate School of Philosophy and Theology in Frankfurt, Germany.[16]


Pope John Paul II appointed Bergoglio as the Archbishop of Buenos Aires in 1998. During the 2001 Consistory, the Polish Pope named Bergoglio as a Cardinal.


Cardinal Bergoglio was elected on March 13, 2013. He chose his name to be called Pope Francis in order to pay tribute to St. Francis of Assisi.[17][5] He is the first Jesuit to be elected as pope.[2]

Despite both his parents being Italians, Francis is the first non-European pope since Pope Gregory III[18] in the 8th century.

Other interests

Personally, Pope Francis likes to read books by authors such as Friedrich Hölderlin, Jorge Luis Borges or Fyodor Dostoevsky. He likes to watch movies of Italian neorealism, and likes to go to the opera.[source?]

He is also interested in football. He is an active member of San Lorenzo de Almagro, which is one of the teams in the Primera División league.[19]


Celibacy of priests

When Bergoglio was cardinal, his views regarding the celibacy of priests were recorded in the book On Heaven and Earth, a record of conversations conducted with a Buenos Aires rabbi.[20] In this book, he said that celibacy "is a matter of discipline, not of faith. It can change" but added: "For the moment, I am in favor of maintaining celibacy, with all its pros and cons, because we have ten centuries of good experiences rather than failures [...] Tradition has weight and validity."[21] He noted that "in the Byzantine, Ukranian, Russian, and Greek Catholic Churches [...] the priests can be married, but the bishops have to be celibate".[21][b] He said that many of those in Western Catholicism who are pushing for more discussion about the issue do so from a position of "pragmatism", based on a loss of manpower.[21] He states that "If, hypothetically, Western Catholicism were to review the issue of celibacy, I think it would do so for cultural reasons (as in the East), not so much as a universal option."[21] He emphasized that, in the meantime, the rule must be strictly adhered to, and any priest who cannot obey it "has to leave the ministry".[21]

Coat of arms of Pope Francis[22]

National Catholic Reporter Vatican analyst Thomas Reese, also a Jesuit, called Bergoglio's use of "conditional language" regarding the rule of celibacy "remarkable".[20] He said that phrases like "for the moment" and "for now" are "not the kind of qualifications one normally hears when bishops and cardinals discuss celibacy".[20]

Beliefs about ity

Pope Francis supports the Catholic teaching that [[ity|]] acts are immoral and holds the teaching of the Church concerning orientation. He also stressed that people should be treated with respect[23][24] Bergoglio opposes same-sex marriage, and in 2011 referred to it as "the devil's work".[25]

Argentina considered legalizing same-sex marriage in 2010. At that time, Bergoglio opposed this legislation.[26] He called it a "real and dire anthropological throwback".[27] In July 2010, while the law was under consideration, he wrote a letter to Argentina's cloistered nuns in which he said:[28][29][30]

In the coming weeks, the Argentine people will face a situation whose outcome can seriously harm the family…At stake is the identity and survival of the family: father, mother and children. At stake are the lives of many children who will be discriminated against in advance, and deprived of their human development given by a father and a mother and willed by God. At stake is the total rejection of God's law engraved in our hearts.
Let's not be naive: This is not a simple political fight; it is a destructive proposal to God's plan. This is not a mere legislative proposal (that's just its form), but a move by the father of lies that seeks to confuse and deceive the children of God… Let's look to St. Joseph, Mary, and the Child to ask fervently that they defend the Argentine family in this moment... May they support, defend, and accompany us in this war of God.

After L'Osservatore Romano reported this, several priests expressed their support for the law.[29][c] people believe that the church's opposition and Bergoglio's language worked in favor of the law's passage and that in response Catholic officials adopted a more conciliatory tone in later debates on social issues such as parental surrogacy.[32][33]

On July 29, 2013, Pope Francis gave an exclusive interview to some journalists who were traveling with him. Upon answering a question if there should be priests,[34] Pope Francis replied:
If someone is and he searches for the Lord and has good will, who am I to judge?
Afterwards then he replied to another question if women should become priests,[34] Francis replied:
The Church has spoken and says no ... that door is closed.


Francis was named 2013 Time Person of the Year in December 2013.[35]

Related pages


  1. Veronica Scarisbrick (18 March 2013). "Pope Francis : "Miserando atque eligendo"...". Vatican Radio. Retrieved 19 March 2013.
  2. 2.0 2.1 "Argentina's Bergoglio elected as new pope," Reuters, 13 March 2013; "List of Popes," Catholic Encyclopedia (2009); retrieved 2013-3-13.
  3. 3.0 3.1 Rice-Oxley, Mark (13 March 2013). "Pope Francis: the humble pontiff with practical approach to poverty". The Guardian (UK). Retrieved 13 March 2013.
  4. "Jorge Mario Bergoglio, 77, of Argentina is Pope Francis I". GMA News. Reuters. 14 March 2013. Retrieved 13 March 2013.
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 "Habemus Papam! Cardinal Bergolio Elected Pope - Fracis I". Vatican News Agency.
  6. "The Story of Saint Francis...". Vatican Radio.
  7. Cockerton, Paul. "It's Pope Francis I: First non-European elected to lead Catholic Church for 1,000 years," The Mirror (UK). 13 March 2013; retrieved 2012-3-13.
  8. Posted: 04/13/2013 6:12 pm EDT (2013-04-13). "Cardinal Walter Kasper Says Pope Francis Will Bring New Life To Vatican II". Retrieved 2013-06-23.
  9. Feiden, Douglas (13 March 2013). "Pope Francis, the new leader of the Catholic Church, praised by many for practicing what he preaches, his humble nature and his empathy for the poor". New York Daily News. Retrieved 4 June 2013.
  10. Vallely, Paul (14 March 2013). "Pope Francis profile: Jorge Mario Bergoglio, a humble man who moved out of a palace into an apartment, cooks his own meals and travels by bus". The Independent. Retrieved 4 June 2013.
  11. "Pope Appeals for More Interreligious Dialogue". 22 March 2013. Retrieved 16 June 2013.
  12. Jorge Bergoglio
  13. "Jesuit Argentine Cardinal Bergoglio elected pope, takes name Francis I". Society of Jesus in the United States. Retrieved 13th March 2013.
  14. [1]
  15. "New pope a soccer fan with common touch," Business Times (Singapore). 15 March 2013; retrieved 2013-2-15.
  16. Hans, Barbara. "The Surprise Pope: Humble and Ascetic with a Murky Past," Spiegel (Germanhy). 13 March 2013; excerpt, "Sankt Georgen Graduate School of Philosophy and Theology, which is located in Frankfurt"; "Papst Franziskus" (Pope Francis), Philosophisch-Theologische Hochschule Sankt Georgen Frankfurt am Main; retrieved 2013-3-17.
  17. "Jorge Mario Bergoglio, 77, of Argentina is Pope Francis". GMA News. Reuters. 14 March 2013. Retrieved 13 March 2013.
  18. Goodstein, Laurie. "Pope Electors Are Sizing Up a Field of Peers," New York Times. February 16, 2013; retrieved 2013-3-13.
  19. Weiss, Jessica. "He Roots for ‘the Saints,’ on the Soccer Field and Off," New York Times. March 14, 2013; excerpt, "He is No. 88,235 on the club’s member list"; retrieved 2013-3-15.
  20. 20.0 20.1 20.2 Gibson, David, "Book reveals new pope's views on celibacy, abuse, crisis", USA Today (from Religion News Service), 20 March 2013, Retrieved 21 March 2013
  21. 21.0 21.1 21.2 21.3 21.4 Connor, Tracy, "Pope Francis spoke of being 'dazzled' by girl, possible change of celibacy rule",, 21 March 2013, Retrieved 21 March 2013
  22. Glatz, Carol. "Symbols adjusted on papal coat of arms," Catholic Herald (UK), 28 March 2013; retrieved 2013-3-28.
  23. Catholic Online. "NEW POPE: Who is this man named Bergoglio? – Living Faith – Home & Family – Catholic Online". Retrieved 2013-03-13.
  24. "Catechism of the Catholic Church – The sixth commandment". 29 October 1951. Retrieved 2013-03-13.
  25. "Para Bergoglio, la ley de matrimonio es 'una movida del Diablo' –". 30 January 2011. Retrieved 2013-03-13. "una movida del Diablo"
  26. "Clashing Pope Francis, Argentine president meet in Vatican". CBC News. 18 March 2013. Retrieved 18 March 2013.
  27. Padgett, Tim (18 July 2010). "The Vatican and Women: Casting the First Stone". Time.,8599,2004702,00.html. Retrieved 13 March 2013.
  28. Pentin, Edward (8 July 2010). "Cardinal Bergoglio Hits Out at Same-Sex Marriage". National Catholic Register. Retrieved 14 March 2013.
  29. 29.0 29.1 Feder, J. Lester (13 March 2013). "Pope Francis Brings Lessons Of Argentina's Marriage Fight To Rome". Buzzfeed. Retrieved 14 March 2013.
  30. Erin McClam (13 March 2013). "Meet the new pope: Francis is humble leader who takes the bus to work". NBC News.
  31. (Spanish) "El cura suspendido: “A la Iglesia le preocupa más la cama de los argentinos que su mesa". Perfil. 13 July 2010. Retrieved 19 March 2013.
  32. Abrevaya, Sebastian (27 August 2012). "Se abroquelan para defender privilegios" (in Spanish). Pagina 12. Retrieved 14 March 2013. "medieval, oscurantista"
  33. De Vedia, Mariano (16 July 2010). "La carta de Bergoglio, un error estratégico" (in Spanish). Retrieved 14 March 2013.
  34. 34.0 34.1 "Pope opens up on priests, says no to women". 29 July 2013. Retrieved 30 July 2013.
  35. "Pope Francis named Time Person of the Year 2013". December 11, 2013. Retrieved December 13, 2013.
  1. Press reports have provided a variety of translations for the phrase. According to Vatican Radio: "Pope Francis has chosen the motto Miserando atque eligendo, meaning lowly but chosen; literally in Latin 'by having mercy, by choosing him'. The motto is one Francis used as bishop. It is taken from the homilies of the Venerable Bede on Saint Matthew's Gospel relating to his vocation:'Jesus saw the tax collector and by having mercy chose him as an apostle saying to him :Follow me.'"[1]
  2. Both in the Eastern Catholic Churches and in the Eastern Orthodox Churches, married men can be ordained to the priesthood, but priests cannot marry after having been ordained. See Code of Canons of the Eastern Churches, canon 795
  3. One priest was suspended after refusing his bishop's order to cease his advocacy.[31]

Other websites

Catholic Church titles
Preceded by
Antonio Quarracino
Archbishop of Buenos Aires
28 February 1998 – 13 March 2013
Succeeded by
Mario Aurelio Poli
Preceded by
Benedict XVI
13 March 2013 – present

[[Category:Time People of the Ye