papal transition

When the new pope meets the old pope: Awkward?

By David Gibson — March 21, 2013

(RNS) Now that Pope Francis has been duly installed, his next order of business is doing something no other pope has had to do in centuries: pay homage to the guy he replaced.

Pope Francis reveals romantic crush during seminary days

By David Gibson — March 20, 2013

(RNS) Pope Francis was once “dazzled” by a young woman he met as a seminarian and even considered abandoning his vocation, he reveals in a newly uncovered interview.

At inaugural Mass, Pope Francis calls for defending environment, poor

By Alessandro Speciale — March 19, 2013

VATICAN CITY (RNS) Pope Francis’ installation Mass was striking for its repeated references to environmental protection, highlighting what is likely to be a central theme of his papacy and setting up the 76-year-old pope as a leading activist against climate change.

New pope means new business for recession-weary Rome

By Alessandro Speciale — March 18, 2013

VATICAN CITY (RNS) Just minutes after Pope Francis finished introducing himself to the crowd in St. Peter’s Square on March 13, a woman perusing the shelves of a tourist shop just outside the squared asked the storekeeper, “When will you have souvenirs of the new pope?”

Loss of papacy leaves some Italians grumbling

By Eric J. Lyman — March 18, 2013

ROME (RNS) “With each conclave, fewer and fewer people will even remember when there was an Italian pope,” says La Stampa’s Giacomo Galeazzi.

Pope Francis signals new course for the papacy

By David Gibson — March 18, 2013

VATICAN CITY (RNS) Ahead of his formal installation on Tuesday, Pope Francis is continuing to send clear signals that he intends to lead a papacy markedly different from his predecessor’s reign — and perhaps different from that of any other pope in modern times.

Vatican defends Pope Francis’ actions during Argentina’s ‘Dirty War’

By Alessandro Speciale — March 15, 2013

VATICAN CITY (RNS) The Vatican swiftly rejected accusations that Pope Francis sided with the brutal Argentinian government in the 1970s when he was a Jesuit leader.

The story behind Pope Francis’ election

By David Gibson — March 15, 2013

VATICAN CITY (RNS) Everything about a conclave is supposed to be secret, but there are always leaks afterwards, and even broad hints from the cardinals about how a pope was elected. This time is no different.

Pope Francis tells cardinals not to cede to ‘pessimism’

By Marco della Cava — March 15, 2013

ROME (RNS) Addressing the entire College of Cardinals, Pope Francis noted that “maybe half of us are in old age, which I consider to be the seat of wisdom.”

Pope Francis has a model for Muslim engagement in St. Francis of Assisi

By Omar Sacirbey — March 15, 2013

Just as many Catholics have connected Pope Francis’ humility and austere lifestyle with that of St. Francis of Assisi, those seeking clues on the new pontiff’s approach to Christian-Muslim relations see another example in his iconic namesake.

Why the first Jesuit pope is a big deal

By Caleb K. Bell — March 14, 2013

WASHINGTON (RNS) As the first Jesuit pope, Francis is a game-changer for relations between the church and its largest religious order.

Pope Francis’ first day hints at a change in papal style

By Alessandro Speciale — March 14, 2013

VATICAN CITY (RNS) Not only is he the first Latin American and the first Jesuit to serve as pope, but Pope Francis seems bent on shaking the ritualized world of Vatican traditions and taboos.

Pope Francis has a long to-do list, and it starts with the Curia

By David Gibson — March 14, 2013

VATICAN CITY (RNS) Naming yourself after St. Francis of Assisi is one thing. Running the Vatican is another. And taming the Vatican bureaucracy is likely to be one of Pope Francis’ most difficult assignments.

Argentina’s Pope Francis heralds a new era for Latin America

By Rick Hampson — March 14, 2013

(RNS) Pope Francis’ roots in Argentina give a boost to the morale and image of a continent that is coming into its own and overcoming many negative stereotypes.

Non-Catholics greet Pope Francis with guarded optimism

By Alia Dastagir — March 14, 2013

(RNS) Leaders of other faiths appeared to embrace the selection of Pope Francis, but also used the opportunity to lay out their own hopes for the new pontiff.

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