Pope Francis.

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Pope Francis


Can the first pontiff born outside Europe for 1,300 years clean up his troubled church? Argentinian Pope, 76, is named Francis I

  • Electors sent up white smoke at 6pm GMT indicating that a new Pope had been chosen after two days of voting
  • New Pontiff unveiled as Argentine Jorge Mario Bergoglio, the Archbishop of Buenos Aires, taking title Pope Francis I
  • Pope Francis appeared before thriving crowds on the balcony of St.Peter's Basilica at 7:15pm GMT
  • He is the first non-European Pope and also the first Jesuit Pope having spent his life in Argentinian capital
  • Criminal complaint was filed against him 2005 accusing cardinal of conspiring with the Argentinian junta in 1976
  • Son of a railway worker who only has one lung and speaks Italian, Spanish and German
  • Vatican said he took the name Francis after St. Francis of Assisi because he is a 'lover of the poor'
  • Barack Obama described him as a 'champion of the poor and the most vulnerable among us'

Tens of thousands of Catholics flocked to the Vatican City last night to witness Jorge Mario Bergoglio's unveiling as Pope Francis I - the Church's first ever leader born outside Europe.
The Argentine son of an Italian railway worker was chosen as the 266th pontiff on the fifth ballot of the conclave of cardinals last night, with the Sistine Chapel's symbolic white smoke revealing the decision.
To the cardinals who chose him, it is hoped the 76-year-old's election will be a watershed moment for the world's 1.2billion Catholics.
The former Archbishop of Buenos Aires is the first South American and also the first Jesuit pontiff, and will be tasked with leading the Church out of one of its darkest spells following the plethora of recent scandals.
But despite the most daunting of starts to his new role, Pope Francis thought it best to start his first papal address with a joke.
He told the thousands of soaking Catholics huddled in the Vatican City's St. Peter's Square that the cardinals had gathered to 'give Rome a bishop' but said that they had ' gone to the ends of the earth to get one '. 

Looking out: Newly elected Pope Francis I appeared on the central balcony of St Peter's Basilica in the Vatican City before tens of thousands of excited Catholics
A leader's view: Newly elected Pope Francis I appears on the balcony of St. Peter's Basilica after being elected by the conclave of cardinals
A first: The 76-year-old, unveiled as Jorge Mario Bergoglio, becomes both the first South American and Jesuit Pope
Taking it in: Argentina's Jorge Bergoglio, elected Pope Francis I, stands at the balcony of St Peter's Basilica overlooking the huge crowd
Talented: Pope Francis I, the first pontiff to have chosen that papal title,  speaks German, Italian and Spanish. He is pictured meeting his predecessor Pope Benedict XVI Joker: He began his address to the crowd with a joke, saying that his brother cardinals had gathered to 'give Rome a bishop' but said that they had 'gone to the ends of the earth to get one'
Joined in prayer: Dressed in white robes with an elaborate stole, he asked the crowds to pray for his predecessor Pope Benedict XVI
Jubilation: The conclave was called after Pope Benedict XVI resigned last month for health reasons
Celebrations: Catholics react as white smoke rises from the chimney on the roof of the Sistine Chapel
Overview: The thriving crowd pictured outside the Sistine Chapel eagerly anticipating the appearance of the new Pontiff on the balcony
Giving thanks: One Catholic in the Vatican City raised his hands and looked to the skies as the white smoke signified a decision had been made
Decision made: White smoke billows from the chimney on the Sistine Chapel indicating that a new Pontiff has been elected by Cardinals


Change: Jorge Bergoglio pictured addressing the huge crowds in the Vatican last night and as a young priest in 1973
The multilingual Pope's birthplace will be seen as a significant move for the Church, taking the Papacy to a continent in which 42 per cent of the world's Catholics live.
It also poses a diplomatic puzzle for Britain, which went to war with Argentina when Bergoglio was rising through the ranks of his national church.
He is first non-European Pope since the Syrian Gregory III in 731.
Known as an avid reformer, he becomes the third non-Italian Pope in a row, having being born and spent his life in the Argentinian capital.


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