Did Benedict suspect Bergoglio would be the next pope?

Given the widespread reports that the current pope was a runner-up in the last conclave, you have to wonder if Pope Benedict sensed that perhaps Cardinal Bergoglio’s time was at hand. It certainly casts the following tidbit from Rocco in a new light. Here’s a post from last month, about one of Benedict’s final appearances: [Read More...]

Pope Francis preaches mercy in Sunday homily

Details from Vatican Radio:  Pope Francis is celebrating Sunday Mass in the parish church of Vatican City, dedicated to St. Anne, the mother of Our Lady. The choir intoned the Attende, Domine! at the entrance, and the readings were those of the fifth Sunday of Lent: from the prophet, Isaiah; Psalm 126 – the Lord [Read More...]

Young Pope Francis turned to God after snub from childhood sweetheart

You can’t make this stuff up:  Jorge Mario Bergoglio, the man this week elected as the first Latin American pope, reportedly turned to religion after he was spurned by his childhood sweetheart when they were both just 12 years old. According to 76-year-old Amalia Damonte, Pope Francis once declared “If I can’t marry you, I’ll [Read More...]

Historic: for first time since schism, Ecumenical Patriarch will attend pope’s installation Mass

This is a pretty big deal, folks:  The Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople Bartholomew I will attend Pope Francis’s inaugural Mass. The Ecumenical Patriarchate Press Office informed AsiaNews about the decision, noting that this is the first time such an event occurs since the Catholic-Orthodox split in 1054, an important sign for Christian unity. The ecumenical patriarch will [Read More...]

“Pope Francis’ style will make work harder for journalists…”

From Sister Mary Ann Walsh with the USCCB in Rome: Pope Francis’ style will make work harder for journalists. He ad libs or even rejects entirely speeches written for him. That means the Vatican cannot always distribute speeches ahead of time under embargo. Today in his meeting with the cardinals he ad libbed so much [Read More...]

Pope asks flock in Argentina to stay home for installation, give money to charity instead

Remarkable:  Apostolic Nunciature Buenos Aires Buenos Aires, March 14, 2013 Your Excellency, I have the honor and the satisfaction of turning to you to inform you that the Holy Father Francis has asked me to transmit to all Bishops, Priests, Religious men and women, and to all the People of God his cherished recognition for [Read More...]

The Franciscan style

Rocco has a few observations:  Beyond scaling back the pomp surrounding his early morning stop at St Mary Major – where he spent a solid half hour in prayer before the protectress of Rome, the ancient image of the Salus Populi Romani – this morning’s La Repubblica reports that the new Pope wanted his retinue to ensure that the basilica [Read More...]

The first homily of Pope Francis

Complete text, via the Vatican News site: In these three readings I see that there is something in common: it is movement. In the first reading, movement is the journey [itself]; in the second reading, movement is in the up-building of the Church. In the third, in the Gospel, the movement is in [the act [Read More...]

Who’s that guy with the white hat?

Not sure who shot this, but evidently one of the cardinals on the bus yesterday made good use of his cell phone to snap the memorable occasion that Cardinal Dolan described yesterday. N.B. He didn’t even sit in the front row. Or take a window seat. [Read more...]

“This is a pope from Galilee”

That’s what a French journalist said in 1978, when Karol Wojtyla became Pope John Paul II.  The cardinals hadn’t elected a man from Poland, he wired back to his office.  They’d picked one from Galilee. More and more, I am getting the same feeling about Pope Francis. From John Thavis:  One of the first things [Read More...]