Local reaction on selection of Pope Francis

Local reaction on selection of Pope Francis

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  • Argentine Jorge Bergoglio elected Pope FrancisMore>>

  • DC's Archbishop returns from conclave in Rome

    DC's Archbishop returns from conclave in Rome

    Wednesday, March 20 2013 7:37 AM EDT2013-03-20 11:37:03 GMT
    Washington's Archbishop, Cardinal Donald Wuerl, is returning from Rome, where he took part in the papal conclave.
    Washington's Archbishop, Cardinal Donald Wuerl, is returning from Rome, where he took part in the papal conclave.
  • Pope Francis opens ministry with installation Mass

    Pope Francis opens ministry with installation Mass

    Tuesday, March 19 2013 5:46 AM EDT2013-03-19 09:46:50 GMT
    Pope Francis officially began his ministry as the 266th pope on Tuesday in an installation Mass simplified to suit his style, but still grand enough to draw princes, presidents, rabbis, muftis and thousands of ordinary people to St. Peter's Square to witness the inauguration of the first pope from the New World.Francis thrilled the crowd at the start of the Mass by taking a long round-about through the sun-drenched piazza and getting out of his jeep to bless a disabled man. It was a gesture f...
    Pope Francis officially began his ministry as the 266th pope on Tuesday in an installation Mass simplified to suit his style, but still grand enough to draw princes, presidents, rabbis, muftis and thousands of ordinary people to St. Peter's Square to witness the inauguration of the first pope from the New World.Francis thrilled the crowd at the start of the Mass by taking a long round-about through the sun-drenched piazza and getting out of his jeep to bless a disabled man. It was a gesture f...
  • Pope Francis prays at Rome basilica in 1st outing

    Pope Francis prays at Rome basilica in 1st outing

    Thursday, March 14 2013 11:10 AM EDT2013-03-14 15:10:44 GMT
    Pope Francis opened his first morning as pontiff by praying Thursday at Rome's main basilica dedicated to the Virgin Mary
    Pope Francis opened his first morning as pontiff by praying Thursday at Rome's main basilica dedicated to the Virgin Mary.

Statement from Cardinal Donald Wuerl, Archbishop of Washington:

Together with the faithful of the Church of Washington, I give thanks to God that we have a Pope and offer our joyful congratulations to our Holy Father Francis, the former Archbishop of Buenos Aires, Argentina. We pledge to him our loyalty and love as the Vicar of Christ, the visible head of the Church Universal and Servant of the servants of God.

Pope Francis is endowed with so many gifts that enhance his mission now as the Chief Shepherd of the world's 1.2 billion Roman Catholics. We thank God for the many intellectual talents and spiritual qualities, pastoral experience and effective ministry of the new Pope.

When Jesus ascended to heaven, he did not leave us orphans. Rather, he gave us his new Body, the Church, led by his Vicar, and he sent the Holy Spirit who gives his gifts to the successors of Peter and the other Apostles and sustains the Church today. The blessing the Holy Father brings to us – and the reason why we salute him so joyfully – is the reaffirmation of our Catholic faith, grounded in the apostolic succession and tradition.

Pope Francis is more than just the successor to Benedict XVI; he is the successor to all those who came before him in an unbroken line going all the way back to Peter. In Pope Francis, we recognize the successor to Peter and the visible sign of the unity of the Church spread throughout the whole world. He is the touchstone for the mission, message and tradition of the Church.

We offer thanks to God for sending us Pope Francis as the Church continues in the Year of Faith and as we face the challenges and opportunities of proposing the Gospel to today’s world.

May God bring to fruitful completion what he has so wonderfully begun in the selection today of Pope Francis.


Catholic University President's Statement on New Pope

Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio, archbishop of Buenos Aires, Argentina, was elected Pope today by the cardinal electors gathered in the Sistine Chapel. Below is a statement from John Garvey, President of The Catholic University of America, about Pope Francis I.

"The Catholic University of America is proud to congratulate Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio on his election as Pope. The Holy See and the University, which was founded in 1887 by the U.S. Catholic bishops under a papal charter issued by Pope Leo XIII, share a unique relationship. As the national University of the Catholic Church in the United States, we have been blessed to host two papal visits: one by Pope John Paul II in 1979 and one by Pope Benedict XVI in 2008. We are excited to move forward under the leadership of Pope Francis I and we pray that the Catholic Church will grow under his guidance in wisdom and Christ's grace. And we hope to welcome him to our campus some day."


The Most Reverend Paul S. Loverde, Bishop of Arlington, on the Election of Pope Francis:

"Habemus Papam! I rejoice that Pope Francis has answered the Lord's call to serve as Successor to Saint Peter, the Vicar of Christ on earth. On behalf of the clergy, religious and lay faithful of the Diocese of Arlington, I offer our new Pope Francis the support of our daily prayers, loyalty and fidelity.

"As the white smoke billowed forth from the chimney and the bells of the Basilica began to ring jubilantly, I eagerly awaited the announcement of our new Pope. When he walked out onto the balcony, my heart was filled with joy. In his first moments as our Pontiff, I was so touched by Pope Francis' humble petition that we first pray for him, before he then bestowed his first papal blessing on the world.

"This is a very exciting and hope-filled time for Catholics the world over, and most assuredly for our brothers and sisters in Latin America who cannot but take great delight in the election of a native son from Argentina. Throughout my life, I have become increasingly aware how the Lord has provided for the Church the shepherd best suited to the particular needs and challenges of the time. I know that this is the case once more. I ask our diocesan family of faith to join me in continued prayers for the pontificate of Pope Francis and for the entire Church."


Statement from the President Barack Obama on His Holiness Pope Francis:

On behalf of the American people, Michelle and I offer our warm wishes to His Holiness Pope Francis as he ascends to the Chair of Saint Peter and begins his papacy. As a champion of the poor and the most vulnerable among us, he carries forth the message of love and compassion that has inspired the world for more than two thousand years—that in each other we see the face of God. As the first pope from the Americas, his selection also speaks to the strength and vitality of a region that is increasingly shaping our world, and alongside millions of Hispanic Americans, those of us in the United States share the joy of this historic day. Just as I appreciated our work with Pope Benedict XVI, I look forward to working with His Holiness to advance peace, security and dignity for our fellow human beings, regardless of their faith. We join with people around the world in offering our prayers for the Holy Father as he begins the sacred work of leading the Catholic Church in our modern world.

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