|Cardinals at Mass before going into the Sistine Chapel|
And the memes on this from Catholic Memes. Oh my, they've been spot on and hilarious.
Then, it was onto watch the chimney for the smoke signal. And keep watching. On Wednesday, it was so funny because a seagull landed on the chimney and wouldn't go away. Wouldn't you know it, "seagull" starting trending on twitter. And then.....the white smoke. I started shouting! My kids thought I was nuts, but when I explained that the new pope had been elected, they understood why I was excited.
How could you not be excited at a time like this? And the anticipation of who the new pope would be, and what name he would take (see wikipedia for a good explanation on this). I mean, seriously, the anticipation was killing me.
|I'll bet it was killing them too.|
How awesome is that? The first pope to take the name Francis. The first Jesuit pope. The first pope from the Americas. About his name? Yeah, that's pretty awesome. It is after St. Francis of Assisi! What I said on facebook: "Being called Francis is a good indication of what he wants his papacy to look like & do. Remember that God told St. Francis of Assisi: "Rebuild my church". Could be seen as a sign that he wants to unify the differing factions of the church."
Stolen from facebook: "I imagine when God spoke to the cardinals and said to vote for Bergoglio, a humble bishop who lives in a tiny apt and refused the limousine (opting instead for walking and public transportation), they all said, "What? The man who does nothing everyday but minister to the sick and poor?" He has nothing!" And God said back, "Exactly."" And now for the inspiring pictures of our new Pope Francis:
|Riding the bus as a cardinal|
|Washing the feet of the sick|
|Look at how dang cute he is?!|
“So we take the buses over and cardinals kind of wait outside to greet the new Holy Father as he comes back to Doma Santa Marta…and as the last bus pulls up, guess who gets off the bus? Pope Francis,” Dolan said. “So I guess he told the driver, ‘That’s OK. I’ll just go with the guys on the bus.’”"
Now, a roundup of links for you to read:
From Raymond Arroyo
Having spoken to a number of people who know Pope Bergoglio here is what I have discerned: He is a man of the people. A humble Archbishop who lives in an apartment and takes a bus to work. The new Pope is known to have a heart for the poor. He has repeatedly spoken about the inequities between rich and poor and stressed social justice. Doctrinally he is right in line with Benedict XVI on marriage, abortion, etc.Pope Francis' first homily via Whispers in the Loggia:
You’ll remember when the cardinals went into the conclave they insisted that they were seeking a reformer to clean up the curia--the Vatican bureaucracy. Well I am told by an individual who worked with Cardinal Bergoglio in the past that he is the man for the job. “He is an ___-kicker who can fix this place from top to bottom,” the man told me tonight. “He’ll get the right people in place.” As a Jesuit leader in Argentina, he battled his order to restrain the rise of liberation theology and tried to reform the Jesuits from within. So the notion of reform and standing up to status quo is nothing new for Bergoglio.
This Gospel continues with a special situation. The same Peter who confessed Jesus Christ, says, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God. I will follow you, but let us not speak of the Cross. This has nothing to do with it.” He says, “I’ll follow you on other ways, that do not include the Cross.” When we walk without the Cross, when we build without the Cross, and when we profess Christ without the Cross, we are not disciples of the Lord. We are worldly, we are bishops, priests, cardinals, Popes, but not disciples of the Lord.Why did Pope Francis go to St. Mary Major Church first thing?
The very first thing Francis does is go to St Mary Major to pray at the tomb of Pius V.The Anchoress on the Jesuit in the Dominican Robes with a Franciscan name:
So who was Pope St Pius V? He was a reforming pope who reigned from 1566- 1572. He cleaned up the curia, excommunicated heretical bishops, cleaned up the immorality in the church and swept the church clean– paving the way for the great surge in the church we call the Counter Reformation. He also excommunicated the tyrant Elizabeth I of England and formed the Holy League–a confederation of Catholic armies which eventually defeated the Ottoman Empire at the Battle of Lepanto. Pius V also instituted the Feast of Our Lady of Victories (nor the feast of Our Lady of the Rosary).
St Francis lived during a time of corruption, wealth and power in the church. He heard Christ say to him, “re-build my church.” Will Pope Francis also hear the call from Christ to “re-build my church” and not only be a new Francis but a new Pius V? I think we will see some high drama in the months to come. Certainly if his reputation in his native Argentina is anything to go by, we may well see a Pope who is uncompromising in his proclamation of the fullness of the Catholic faith. He stood up against an aggressive secular authority when they tried to impose same sex marriage and abortion. He also stood up to his clergy and led by example with an austere life committed fully to the gospel. He also stood up against the clergy who wanted to get involved in politics. He has said ambition and power seeking are a sin.
Pope Benedict took his name from Benedict of Nursia, the Father of Western Monasticism, and it is Western Monasticism that helped to restore civilization after the Dark Ages, largely by storing up its knowledge, creating a continuum for instruction and advancement. This pope takes his name from Francis, the church rebuilder who came along when we had balled ourselves up because of all we thought we knew.Calah at Barefoot and Pregnant talks about Pope Francis Teaching Her to Walk the Walk :
Seems right that they should follow each other in papacy as in history. I read somewhere yesterday that “Pope Benedict taught us what faith means, this pope will teach us how faith is lived.” And that sounds about right to me, and I think we really need some real-time instruction in the living of the faith.
Seeing him, during his first mass — again, a Jesuit,with the Franciscan sensibility, the Dominican cassock beneath his chasuble, but now offering mass at a “Benedictine” altar (albeit with the big candlesticks sensibly moved)– we saw a Novus Ordo, but in Latin, and again the thought occurred: UNITY.
He takes public transit. He lives in a small apartment. He cooks his own meals. When he was named Cardinal, he ordered the parishioners in Argentina who were gathering funds to come celebrate with him in Rome to stop and distribute the money they had raised to the poor. After he was elected, all the cardinals stood around at the hotel waiting for the papal car, when the last bus pulled in and out climbed Our Holy Father. You can just imagine him, can’t you, saying awkwardly to the drive, “Um, you know, that’s okay, I’ll just go with the guys on the bus. There’s no need to waste the gas money.”Whispers in the Loggia again:
And then there was this morning. The papal Mercedes – waiting again, this time to take Francis on his intended visit to St Mary Major – was again left behind in favor of a stock Volkswagen. And on the way back to his new home – which Boston's Capuchin Cardinal Seán O'Malley compared to "being a prisoner in a museum" – the Pope called for a detour to the Domus Paulus VI, the clergy lodging across the Tiber that was his pre-Conclave hotel, to collect his things, check out and pay the bill himself (below).Simcha Fischer on Papamoon (what a great phrase!):
As the afternoon press briefing noted, Francis wanted to "set an example" by personally running the errand and settling the tab with his own money.
Along the way, the bishops of Argentina received a message from their countryman-Pope, communicated through the Nunciature in Buenos Aires. In the three-sentence memo, obtained by Whispers, Archbishop Emil Tscherrig wrote that Francis wanted to convey his "sentiments of gratitude" for their prayers and expressions of care for him.
The next sentence, however, was the kicker – repeating the call then-Archbishop Bergoglio made on receiving the red hat in 2001, the nuncio said that the Pope "would like that, instead of going to Rome for the inauguration of his pontificate" on Tuesday, the prelates express "their spiritual closeness [to Francis]... by accompanying the neediest with an act of charity."
His very apparent genuine concern for the poor and helpless seems to include a special tenderness for women. Look at him as Archbishop washing the feet of this new mother in a maternity hospital.
Deacon's Bench on this Pope from Galilee, who links to this piece by John Thavis:
“Holy Father, it’s always done this way.”John Thavis follows up with First the gestures, now the words:
In his first 24 hours in office, Pope Francis has already given indications that he may not be intimidated by those words, as he creates his own style of being pope.
That was clear from the moment he put on his papal robes, donning the simple white cassock but declining to wear the ermine-trimmed red cape known as the mozzetta, which was left hanging on the wardrobe in the Room of Tears.
To Vatican officials who offered him an elaborate gold pectoral cross to wear around the neck, he said he’d prefer to keep his very simple cross that he’s worn as a bishop. He accepted the congratulations of cardinals not seated on a traditional throne-like chair, but standing up and greeting them one by one.
His basic point was that a church that doesn’t remain true to the message of “Christ on the cross” risks drifting into a worldly way of thinking that ultimately leads nowhere.What I'm reading and seeing is that our new Pope is going to keep us on our toes, and so I leave you with this fitting graphic:
I think what the pope was signaling was something different. I think he was speaking above all to the cardinals in the room, and letting them know that the church reforms he has in mind are not going to be coming out of a management manual, but will be motivated by the most radical demands of the Gospel.
“I felt the affection of the universal church,” and even from people who do not share the Catholic faith, he said. “From every corner of the earth I felt prayers for the new pope.”
He indicated he would try to build on that affection, and he encouraged the cardinals to do the same. “Let’s never give to pessimism, to that bitterness that the devil offers us every day.” (Yes, “the devil” again.)