October 24, 2014 14:40 UTC

In the News

Pope Francis Represents Firsts for Catholics

Pope Francis is the first from the Americas and the first Jesuit.

Pope Francis appearing after he was first elected Pope.
Pope Francis appearing after he was first elected Pope.

Multimedia

Play or download an MP3 of this story
From VOA Learning English, this is IN THE NEWS in Special English.
 
Former Argentine Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio has become the first Latin American to be elected leader of the worldwide Roman Catholic Church.  
 
At least 77 of the Catholic Church’s 115 cardinals chose the new Pope during a vote in the Vatican in Rome. The new leader, called Pope Francis, later joked to the public that the cardinals went almost to the end of the earth to find a new Pope.
 
He follows Pope Emeritus Benedict in office. The former pope resigned the position because, at age 85, he said he lacked the strength to continue his work.
 
On Thursday, Pope Francis led his first Mass as Pope for the cardinals who elected him. He urged them to remain faithful to the Gospel, the teachings of those who follow Jesus Christ, and avoid modern desires.  
 
Pope Francis was born Jorge Mario Bergolio in Buenos Aires, Argentina on December 17, 1936 to immigrant Italian parents. In 1960 he earned a philosophy degree from the Catholic University in Buenos Aires. Later he received a master’s degree in chemistry at the University of Buenos Aires. He officially became a priest in 1969. For many years he taught in Catholic schools and schools for priests-in-training. Pope Francis became the new Archbishop of Buenos Aires in 1998. He was made a cardinal by Pope John Paul Second in February of 2001.
 
Pope Francis is known for his conservative beliefs. Argentina became the first Latin American country to make same-sex marriage legal in 2010. At that time, he called on priests across the nation to urge Catholics to protest. He said the legislation would be harmful to the family. But, even though he opposes homosexuality, he has called for respect toward people who love others of the same sex.
 
As a priest and cardinal, Pope Francis also became known for his simple lifestyle, personal humility and commitment to social justice.
Pope Francis is the first Jesuit to be elected to lead the church. Jesuits are known for their commitment to the poor.
 
Catholic Church expert Father Thomas Reese says Pope Francis rose through church leadership in Argentina while continuing a simple life.
"He takes his vow of poverty very seriously. He refused to live in the Bishop's palace, he moved to a very simple apartment, cooked his own meals and he didn't want the chauffeur-driven limousine that the bishop normally had."
 
This week, after holding his first Mass, the new Pope requested guards to take him to the hotel where he was staying so he could pay his bill and collect his suitcases.
 
The former Cardinal Bergolio is the first to choose Francis as his papal name. In doing so, Pope Francis has linked himself with the 13th century Italian priest who led his life in poverty, the man who became known as Saint Francis of Assisi.
 
Next week, the new Pope will be officially installed.
This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Learn with The News

  • Brazil Elections

    Audio Who Will Be Brazil's Next President?

    Brazilians will choose a president Sunday. Two candidates will be on the ballot -- Dilma Rousseff and Senator Aecio Neves. President Rousseff won the most votes in the first round of voting earlier this month. But she did not win a majority of votes, so a runoff election is required. More

  • Audio Gunman Identified in Canadian Capital

    Also, UN human rights officials have called on China to guarantee open elections in Hong Kong. And, an attack in southwest Pakistan kills 11 people. WHO advises against Ebola travel bans. | In the News More

  • Tiny Police Cameras Oakland

    Video US Police Increase Use of Body Cameras

    Police officers in Washington, DC, and New York City are wearing cameras on their bodies as part of a test. The goal of the program is to reduce the use of force by officers and lower the number of criticisms from citizens. Police officers in many smaller communities are already doing so. More

  • General view of the city of Luxembourg in this picture taken on November 20, 2012.

    Audio Luxembourg Set to End Bank Secrecy

    European Union finance ministers have reached an agreement that will make it more difficult for tax avoiders to hide their money. The new legislation was approved last week after Luxembourg and Austria agreed to lift their vetoes. Countries known as tax havens had blocked the bank secrecy laws. More

  • Armed officers approach Parliament Hilll following a shooting incident in Ottawa, Oct. 22, 2014.

    Video Deadly Attack Shocks Canada's Capital

    Also, Kurdish lawmakers in Iraq vote to send Kurdish forces to the Syrian town of Kobani. China said 43 people tested for possible Ebola infection do not have the virus. Russia and Ukraine are still working to reach an agreement on Ukraine's payments for natural Gas. More

Featured Stories

  • Audio Oscar de la Renta Dressed First Ladies and Movie Stars

    Clothing designer Oscar de la Renta died Monday at his home in the American state of Connecticut. He was 82 years old. His wife said he died of problems related to cancer. Mr. de la Renta dressed American movie stars and first ladies such as Jacqueline Kennedy, Nancy Reagan and Hillary Clinton. More

  • Audio Iron Ships Clash at Sea

    The American Civil War was fought not only on land, but at sea. In 1862, Confederate and Union forces fought a new kind of navy battle in waters off Hampton Roads, Virginia. It was the first battle between iron ships. On the Confederate side was a ship called the Virginia. | The Making of a Nation More

  • Audio San Francisco Radio Stations Ban Lorde's 'Royals'

    The California baseball team, San Francisco Giants, is playing the Kansas City Royals for the 2014 Major League Baseball championship, the World Series. Two radio stations in San Francisco banned the hit song "Royals." In return, another station in Kansas City chose to play the song once every hour. More

  • A neurovascular unit on a chip being developed by Vanderbilt University researchers. (Vanderbilt University Photo/John Wikswo)

    Video Scientists Design Chips to Act Like Human Organs

    Testing new drugs for safety and effectiveness is a costly process in the United States. It also can take a lot of time. Some scientists are now designing silicon computer chips that act like human organs. The scientists think they have found a way to make the process faster and more economical. More

  • Brain Resource Infographic

    Audio Dealing with Distractions and Overreactions

    Five million American children and teenagers have Attention Deficit / Hyperactivity Disorder, commonly known as ADHD. ADHD makes it difficult - if not impossible - to stay with a duty until it is complete. Katherine Ellison knows the problem well. | Health Report More

Practice Your Writing

Confessions of an English Learner BlogConfessions of an English Learner Blog

Tell us About Our Programs