The People's Pope, Patron of Catholic Reformation
Born as Jorge Mario Bergoglio, Pope Francis began his illustrious religious life as a Jesuit, ordained on December 13, 1969. In his earlier days, he suffered with grave lung, respiratory, and breathing difficulties. Part of his lungs had to be removed in emergency surgery. Father Jorge began his religious calling as a math teacher and later became a Bishop in Buenos Aires, Argentina. He became a Cardinal on February 21, 2001. He was elected Pope on March 13, 2013.
Pope Francis is well-known as a Reformer in the Roman Catholic Church. He leads by example with a very humble life, often rejecting the excess and largess most Holy Fathers have revered. In fact, Pope Francis wears a simple silver cross every day. It features a shepherd minding his flock and has become immensely popular. We have been honored to be among pope Francis’ attendants when he Canonized Saint Teresa of Calcutta, others, and most recently Saint John Henry Newman. Pope Francis is not without his detractors in Catholicism, who derisively call him by his last name, Bergoglio, instead of Pope Francis. He has welcomed a transgendered woman to the Vatican for a meeting and regarding homosexuals, he is famously known to have said, “Who Am I to Judge?” His outward love and compassion for the oppressed and marginalized has brought many Catholics back to the Church. His writing and teaching on the Joy of Love and his love for the Aborigines, whom many have discarded, by and large has had the effect of a Catholic Renaissance throughout the world. We were honored and humbled to attend one of his Sunday Masses at Saint Peter’s Square in Rome. © 2020