Mar 13, 2013

Francis - "Rebuild my Church!"

Habemus Papam!  A heart for the poor, a life of simplicity, a love for Christ and his Church, an effort to repair division.  Perhaps the words spoken by our Lord to St. Francis of Assisi more than 800 years ago - "Francis, rebuild my Church" -  have taken flesh once again in our own day.  All the prognosticators, pundits, and crystal ball gazers - were wrong.  Pope Francis I, it has already been said, will be a continuation of Pope John Paul I.  A papacy that we could only speculate about may now become true in our day.

The opening words of Pope Francis I to the crowds below and the world:

"Brothers and sisters, good evening!

You know how the duty of the Conclave is to give a bishop to Rome. It seems that my brother cardinals have gone to take him from the edge of the world... but here we are.

I thank you for your welcome. The diocesan family of Rome has your bishop: thank you! And before anything else, I'd like for us to pray for our bishop-emeritus, Benedict XVI. Let us pray together for him, that the Lord bless him and Our Lady keep him in her care....

Our Father....

Hail Mary....

Glory Be....

And now, together, let us start this road: bishop and people. This [new] path of the church of Rome, which "presides in charity" [over] all the churches. A path of brotherhood, of love, of trust between us. Let us pray always for ourselves: one for the other. Let us pray for all the world, that we all might know a great fraternity. I wish you that this journey as Church, that we begin today and on which my Cardinal-Vicar [of Rome] will help me, might be fruitful for the evangelization of this beautiful city!

And now I'll give you my blessing... but first – first, I ask you this favor: before the bishop blesses his people, I ask that you pray to the Lord that he might bless me: the prayer of the people, seeking God's blessing for their bishop. In silence, let's please make a prayer for me....

(Here the Pope bowed to the crowd below)

Now I give my blessing to you and all the world – to all men and women of good will....

Brothers and sisters, I leave you, but only for now. Many thanks for your warm welcome. Please pray for me often!
I'll see you soon – tomorrow I want to go pray to Our Lady– her shrine at St Mary Major, because she's the one who cares for Rome.
Good night and sleep well!"
This prayerful, humble, yet courageous man will be a gift of God to the world. 

If this isn't a sign of the Holy Spirit among us, we have no hope.  But it is indeed! 

Viva il Papa!