After taking a more conservative choice with Pope Benedict XVI only to have the Pope make history by resigning for the newly-made position of Pope Emeritus, the new Pope was going to be history-making no matter who was selected from the body of Cardinals. As it turns out, the new Pope was to be the sort of person who has never been pope. Jorge Mario Bergoglio has become Pope Francis, first of that name, and he’s historic for reasons aside from his name.
“I would like to thank you for your embrace,” said the newly-minted Pope Francis as he addressed the crowd of thousands from St. Peter’s Basilica in Vatican City. “My brother cardinals have chosen one who is from far away, but here I am.”
Indeed, the former Cardinal Bergoglio is from very far away. Namely, Buenos Aires, Argentina, where he had been archbishop. Not only is he the first Francis as Pope, he’s also the first person from South America to be Pope and the first person from the Western Hemisphere in general. Francis is the first non-European Pope in 1,200 years; however, he is the son of Italian immigrants to Argentina, so there’s definitely some traditional Italian Catholic background in his history. He’s also the first Jesuit to be elevated to the position of Pope.
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