Wellington Catholics up-beat about Pope Francis election

Wellington Catholics say the surprise selection of Jorge Mario Bergoglio from Argentina as new pope is a sign of new ideas being brought into the troubled church establishment.

The news was broken to Wellington’s Catholics during morning mass at Sacred Heart Cathedral.

A messenger entered the chapel and handed a piece of paper with Cardinal Bergoglio’s name to Archbishop John Dew.

Archbishop Dew, the leader of the Catholic Church in New Zealand, said he met the new pope at a synod in 2005.

“I believe he is very well liked and much respected in Argentina,” he said.

“It is a good sign someone from Latin America [has been elected].’

Archbishop Dew said his chosen pontifical name, Francis, suggested he retained his commitment to social justice, following the example of St Francis of Assisi.

Mass attendee Jenny Gordon said the pope’s choice of name was striking and the election of an Argentinian was a sign of change.

She immediately thought of St Francis and his fight for social justice when she heard the news, she said.

“He is someone from outside the established pattern. It’s fitting that Pope Benedict changed the pattern by his resignation, to bring in new ideas and think differently.” Continue reading

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