Pope Won’t Move, Will Live in Vatican Worker’s Residence

He lives with his employees, and it appears he likes it. 

He wears black shoes, doesn’t like limousines, and makes his own telephone calls.

Not only do I love our Pope, but he’s beginning to get through to me, at least a little bit. I spend more on toys, tech toys in particular, than the poorest of the poor on this earth make in a year. If Apple sells it, I own it. My husband says I’m competing with Imelda Marcos as to who has the most shoes.

Maybe I need to re-think my priorities. After all, if the Pope can do it, then shouldn’t we?

Details of the story from CNA/EWTN:

.- Pope Francis said this morning he will stay at Saint Martha’s residence instead of moving to the Apostolic Palace, according to the Vatican press office.

“After the Mass ended this morning, the Pope told those present that he intends to remain in the Casa Santa Marta and stay with the employees,” said the Holy See’s press office director, Father Federico Lombardi.

Pope Francis has been staying at the residence instead of the papal apartment because of renovations that were taking place there. According to the Associated Press, those updates have been completed and the apartment is ready for the Pope to move in.

He has invited street-sweepers, Vatican gardeners, the residency’s staff and the Vatican newspaper’s staff to take part in the daily Mass.

The seals of the papal apartment have been removed, but the Argentinian Pope will remain in St. Martha’s residence for the time being.

Fr. Lombardi did not say if the Pope will move out in the future.

When he was in Buenos Aires, Pope Francis lived in a small apartment, instead of the grand archbishop’s residence.

For years, he cooked his own meals and traveled on public transport around the city. (Read more here.)

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  • vox borealis

    He wears black shoes…
    What is the seeming obsession—I read it everywhere—about black shoes? The traditional red shoes of the pope symbolize the blood of the martyrs. So, the message of the Francis, the new priorities, is that we should ignore the martyrs?

    • Rebecca Hamilton

      Do you seriously believe this?
      ” So, the message of the Francis, the new priorities, is that we should ignore the martyrs?”

      • vox borealis

        Of course I don’t believe it. But I do question the obsession everyone seems to have with the color of his shoes—especially given the symbolism and tradition of the footwear he has abandoned. I mean, seriously, why should the color of his shoes (black) make me question my own priorities, unless I buy into this emerging narrative that red shoes are somehow decadent and black shoes are not. Heck, I own one pair of fancy dress shoes, and their black!

        More generally, if we are going to invest so much in the symbolic gestures that Francis is (allegedly) making, we should at least be aware of that which he is giving up. In addition, I am a little uncomfortable with what seems like the wholesale change in approach that Francis has taken so far because it appears like a repudiation of Benedict (who moreover spent his entire pontificate stressing continuity over rupture). I am not claiming that Francis is repudiating Benedict, but the reaction of so many observers, including many a fine blogger, has been “oh wow, look at how Francis is making me think by doing things so differently.” And that, I think, tends toward the spirit of rupture that has dominated the Church for the last 50 years.

        • Rebecca Hamilton

          I thought that was the case, but knew you needed to clarify it or others, who don’t read all your comments and know basically where you’re coming from might not “get” it. Thanks for the clarification.

  • http://hiddeninjesus.wordpress.com Jessica Renshaw

    What a very Christ-like thing to do! “For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sake he became poor, so that you through his poverty might become rich.” 2 Corinthians 8:9

  • Marye

    From what I recall, John Paul II rarely wore red shoes (he wore brown). So was his message also “that we should ignore the martyrs”?

  • http://onecatholicsstruggle.weebly.com Theresa

    I admit, I’m a little torn on this one. I like that Pope Francis seems to be a very extroverted and likable guy. Christ was, and is, very accessible to the people. It’s nice to see that in our earthly Vicar of Christ. I don’t think the color/style of the shoes matters much- heck, I think if I had that much responsibility, I’d opt for some tried and true comfy shoes so at least I wouldn’t be distracted by having achy feet. I think it’s great that so many people are inspired by his example to consider how they live their lives. But… I wonder how much, for example, the Archdiocese of Buenos Aires had to pay for the continued upkeep of the Bishop’s residence while the then Cardinal stayed elsewhere.
    To illustrate my point, my hometown parish’s rectory was modestly furnished. It had a couple beds, dining room table, sofa and chairs and coffee table, and an office area. Nothing extravagant. The old priest left and a new one came in, who had a very austere sense of style. Immediately, he had the Salvation Army come to the rectory and collect most of the furniture and the rest he stored in one of the bedrooms upstairs. This priest preferred to sleep on the floor and had very peculiar dietary habits. Well, he got reassigned and the parish got a new priest. Now the parish had to fork out money (that it didn’t really have) to refurnish the rectory so the new priest could have a few of the basics again.
    And I’m completely with Vox that it is tragic that so much of the positive reports of Pope Francis seem to be done in terms of “not like Benedict.” (Not saying your post here was in this category!) The same Holy Spirit guided both conclaves. And they obviously have different charisms, but they “all come from the same Lord.” I’m glad that it seems Pope Francis is trying to discourage such comparisons. Probably, within the next couple months, Francis’s humility will “get old” to the media. Then it will be really interesting to see what kind of lasting impact this has on people.

  • http://ashesfromburntroses.blogspot.com/ Manny

    I don’t know, he might be taking this simplicity thing a little too far. Max Lindenman was thinking along that line, though not quite going that far with his statement:

    The Papacy still requires a certain magesty. Or am I wrong?

    • Subsistent

      “Majesty”? It’s long been accepted (as fact or as legend) without qualms among Catholics, that His Majesty King Louis IX of France — St. Louis — habitually invited poor beggars to his royal dinner table, and ate their leavings.

    • abb3w

      Why wouldn’t a majestic humility be more in accord with his role?

  • Will J

    It makes sense to want to be closer to others and not isolated in the papal apartment. I see the shoe thing as a reaction from some who do not like the liturgy of the past 50 years. Yet there is still a Latin Mass and no one has changed that.

  • pagansister

    Who pays to dust and keep up the Papal apartment if indeed Pope Frances decides to live permanently where he is? It has to be a huge place with lots of “stuff” in it. Will it just sit empty for the years Frances is Pope?

    • Theodore Seeber

      It isn’t exactly a huge place to begin with. 5 rooms under Pope Benedict XVI, and 4 of those rooms sat empty for 20 years before that under Pope John Paul II. It doesn’t even have a toilet in it- got to go down the hall for that.

      It is less square footage than a New York Apartment, and hate to say it, but Pope Francis likely has more real living space, and more privacy, with the employees over at Casa Santa Marta.

  • Birthday girl

    I heard that the red shoes were made by a particular cobbler-family that gave them to the Holy Father as gifts from the heart. The first pope I’ve seen mentioned was JPII …. so … did prior popes also wear red shoes? How far back does the custom go?