Pope Francis

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Pope Francis
His Holiness, Pope Francis.
Papacy Began: 13 March 2013
Papacy Ended: Currently in office

Predecessor: Pope Benedict XVI Successor: None

Born: 17 December 1936, as Jorge Mario Bergoglio

Nationality: Argentine

Motto: Miserando atque eligendo

Reference style: His Holiness

In person: Your Holiness

In religion: Holy Father

His Holiness Pope Francis (formerly Jorge Mario Bergoglio, born December 17, 1936, in Buenos Aires, Argentina) became the Pope of the Roman Catholic Church on March 13, 2013. Pope Francis, elected as 266th Roman Catholic pontiff, is the first Jesuit and the first Latin American pope; First non-European pope in 1300 years. He succeeded Pope Benedict XVI, to whom he was reportedly the runner-up in the papal election of 2005. [1] Archbishop Bergoglio was created a cardinal by the late Pope John Paul II.


Pope Francis entered the Society of Jesus in 1958. As a Jesuit, Cardinal Bergoglio rejected and opposed liberation theology in South America.

The son of an Italian workman who emigrated to Argentina, Cardinal Bergoglio chose to carry the name of an Italian saint, "Francis", while serving as Pope. And like his papal namesake, St. Francis, Cardinal Bergoglio has an ascetic and humble lifestyle.

Pope Francis has overcome a disability: as a young man, one of his lungs was removed due to illness.

The Pope is the spiritual leader of 1.2 billion people - almost 17% of the Earth's population and 55% of all Christians.

Naming conventions

Vatican tradition holds that when a new Pope is elected and takes a name that has not been used by a prior pope, they will be referred to simply as "Pope ______", rather than "Pope ______ I" until another pope has taken the same name. In this case "Pope Francis". [2][3]

Pope Francis' first mass


Pope Francis has shown to be very affectionate toward the poor, the sick, and the needy. Rather than flout his position as the head of the Church, with the expectation of being acknowledged, he humbles himself when in the presence of those less-fortunate.[4]

Political and Scientific Views

Conscientious objection to same-sex marriage

Pope Francis has stated, in regard to the political case of Kim Davis, that a person should have the right to refuse to carry out a duty, if it violates the person's conscience.[5][6]

Evolution and Big Bang

Pope Francis recently declared evolution and Big Bang theory to be right and that God isn't "a magician with a magic wand".

Speaking at the Pontifical Academy of Sciences, the Pope made comments which experts said put an end to the “pseudo theories” of creationism and intelligent design that some argue were encouraged by his predecessor, Benedict XVI.[7]


Pope Francis believes there is harm posed by the homosexuality, and has even acknowledged the presence of a "gay lobby" in the Vatican that he seemed to suggest operated from corrupt motives. [8]

Cardinal Bergoglio, now Pope Francis, has been an outspoken critic of homosexual adoption of children, explaining that it is discriminatory against the children.[9] Pope Francis is also strongly pro-life, and has referred abortion as the "culture of death."

Among his teachings and stands, he strongly affirms church teaching on the intrinsic immorality of homosexual practices, though he teaches the importance of respecting homosexual persons. He strongly opposed legislation introduced in 2010 by the Argentine Government to give legal equivalency between true marriage and homosexual partners. [10]

Church sexual abuse of children

On September 27, 2015, Pope Francis met with victims of sexual abuse by clergymen of the Church. He apologized on their behalf, and promised to hold those responsible accountable.[11]

Persecution and human rights

Pope Francis has spoken out against violence of minorities in the Middle-East,[12] including that of Christians, and, contrary to the typical Catholic views, has endorsed the use of force, if necessary, to accomplish this goal.[13]

His holiness remains an adamant supporter of Social Justice. His 2009 speech, titled Las deudas sociales de nuestro tiempo, or The Social Debts of our Time, lays out his views on the world's inequality, between rich and poor, especially in Argentina. He further rebuked the wealthy, claiming that "You [the wealthy] avoid taking into account the poor. We have no right to duck down, to lower the arms carried by those in despair. We must reclaim the memory of our country who has a mother, recover the memory of our Mother".

Palestine and Israel

Pope Francis is also set to sign a treaty that includes a provision that will recognize Palestine as a state [14].

See also


  1. Reuters: Pope Succession
  2. Los Angeles Times: Pope Naming
  3. CNN: Pope Francis' name choice 'precedent shattering'
  4. Washington Post: Pope Francis saw a boy with cerebral palsy. This is what happened next
  5. NBC News: Conscientious objection is a human right, Pope Francis
  6. Time: What Pope Francis thought of the United States
  7. Independent: Evolution and Big Bang Theory are right, and God isn't a magician with a magic wand
  8. The American Conservative: Pope Francis and the Vatican's 'gay lobby', Giraldi, Philip (18 June 2013)
  9. Yahoo News, Australia: Children's rights, Pope Francis
  10. Catholic Online: NEW POPE: Who is this man named Bergoglio?
  11. USA Today: Hundreds of thousands flood Philly for Pope Francis' final Mass
  12. The Guardian: Isis violence against minorities in Iraq must be stopped, Pope Francis
  13. Business Insider: Pope Francis Endorses Use Of Force Against ISIS In Iraq
  14. New York Times: Vatican to recognize Palestinian State in new treaty