Thursday, March 14, 2013

Reflections on Pope Francis I

I’ve been reading some news articles off of Catholic news services and the Vatican site and will share just a few things I’ve read about our new ‘good Shepherd’.

From a press conference after the conclave with Cardinal Dolan:
Bergoglio was known to ride the bus to work in Argentina, and did so going to and from the hotel where the cardinals participating in the conclave stayed this week.

Dolan told reporters the surprising story of how the newly elected pope decided to take the bus back to the hotel Wednesday with the rest of the cardinals instead of riding in the Holy Father’s car. “So we take the buses over and cardinals kind of wait outside to greet the new Holy Father as he comes back to Doma Santa Marta…and as the last bus pulls up, guess who gets off the bus? Pope Francis,” Dolan said. “So I guess he told the driver, ‘That’s OK. I’ll just go with the guys on the bus.’”

And Cardinal Timothy Dolan said, Francis raised gales of laughter from fellow cardinals at a subsequent dinner, telling them: "May God forgive you" and before he retired said ‘tonight I think I will sleep peacefully, I hope you can also.’

From a article this morning: after praying at the 5th-century Basilica of Santa Maria Maggiore (Saint Mary Major), he asked the driver to go to a Rome residence for priests so Mass and washed the feet of 12 sick children (he has done the same with AIDS patients). His episcopal motto is "miserando atque eligendo" (lowly, yet chosen). that he could pick up bags he left there before he moved to a guesthouse inside the Vatican for the electoral conclave - a wry reminder that he did not expect to become pope.

Later on Thursday he was to go to the papal summer retreat at Castel Gandolfo, south of Rome, to meet Emeritus Pope Benedict

“He became a priest at 32, nearly a decade after losing a lung due to respiratory illness and quitting his chemistry studies.

he has spoken out strongly against gay marriage, denouncing it in 2010 as "an attempt to destroy God's plan," and is expected to pursue the uncompromising moral teachings of Benedict and John Paul II.”

“Pope Francis has a heart for the poor and suffering, much like Blessed Mother Teresa. In 2006, he chose a children's hospital in Buenos Aires to celebrate Holy Thursday” ( I saw a photo on FB of him leaning over and washing the feel of children in wheel chairs)

“From a news report today: "Choosing not to use the official papal car, but another with a Vatican plate... [Pope Francis] instructed the driver to take him to his hotel so that he could collect his belongings. And despite now effectively being in charge of the Domus Internationalis Paulus VI - a Church-run residence - he insisted on paying the bill."

I know as the days go on we will learn much more about the background of this holy man.

Side note , the US currently does not have a ambassador to the Vatican. One of the headlines I read was “Obama's Pope Francis Challenge: Appoint a New Ambassador to the Vatican” as he has already sent one who’s papers were refused by Benedict XVI, the last was under scrutiny as he signed a document calling Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, who favors abortion rights, "a woman of deep faith." A short quote from that article: "The Holy See has always set a very simple standard: the person should not be in opposition to fundamental teachings of the church that belong to our common shared humanity," a State Department official told the Catholic News Agency .