On March 13, 2013, Buenos Aires archbishop Jorge Mario Bergoglio became the 266th Pope. The announcement of a new Pope came at nighttime, as white smoke poured from the chimney and caused the crowd to cheer while waiting to see who has been chosen. The chimney had yielded black smoke two times before they had made a decision.
Benedict XVI, Pope Francis’ predecessor, has just resigned a month before the new Pope took the seat. His cause of resignation was his declining mental and physical health.
A New Pope Emerges
During Pope Francis’ first appearance as the Pope, he asked the people to pray for him. The Pope also repeated the request on his very first tweet dated March 17, 2013, which read, “Dear friends, I thank you from my heart and I ask you to continue to pray for me. Pope Francis.”
On the anniversary of his first year at the Vatican, the Pope again tweeted “Please pray for me.”
Please pray for me.
— Pope Francis (@Pontifex) March 13, 2014
Pope Francis has been making headlines because of his merciful and less judgmental approach. According to Father Joel Camaya, a priest from the Philippines, the people can expect the Catholic Church to be revitalized, as “he would continue to make it closer to those in the peripheries. It is an echo of the action of the other Francis, the man of Assisi, rebuilding the church of Jesus.”
Pope Francis has shied away from the Vatican rules during the first year of his papacy. He does not use the papal limo and instead travels in a Ford Focus, and he does not reside in the papal apartments and lives in the Vatican hotel. He is also known to make phone calls to people who write to him.
The Vatican marked the Pope’s first year by releasing an e-book that consists of quotations from the pope’s first year in office.
Pope Francis: Rare Footage
Image via YouTube