On Wednesday, Roman Catholic cardinals selected a man who advocates for the poor as the church’s new leader.
His Eminence, Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio, 76, is the first pope from Latin America.
The 266th pontiff of the church will be known as Pope Francis. Several media reports, including The New York Times, New York Magazine and the National Catholic Register have provided insight on the new pontiff.
Who he is:
- An Argentinian, the son of Italian immigrants
- The first Jesuit to lead the church
- Fluent in three languages: Italian, Spanish and German
- A fan of the underdog soccer team San Lorenzo
What he’s done:
- Visited a hospice to kiss and wash the feet of 12 AIDS patients
- Traded his mansion and chauffeur for a modest apartment and public transportation as archbishop
- Led the Argentine Conference of Bishops for three years
- Used to tango with his girlfriend before he “discovered [his] religious vocation.”
Why he chose the name Francis:
His Holiness wanted to honor St. Francis of Assisi, an admirer of nature and a servant to the poor and destitute.