The Vatican has released a medal commemorating the 7th year of Pope Francis’ pontificate.
The reverse side is inspired by the upcoming Pan-Amazonian Synod of Bishops, with the words “And God saw that it was good” in Latin (Genesis 1).
All you need to know about Pope Francis
Pope Francis was born in Buenos Aires, Argentina on the 17th of December, 1936. When elected as the pope in 2013, he was already 76 years old. Jorge Mario Bergoglio was the son of Mario José Bergoglio and Regina María Sívori, two Italian immigrants. Bergoglio was the eldest of five children. It is said during his younger years he enjoyed traditional dancing and his studies. Before realising he should pursue priesthood, Bergoglio worked briefly as a chemical food technician.
It wasn’t until 1960 that Pope Francis became a Jesuit. Later in 1963 he graduated as a philosopher and became a teacher of literature and psychology at a college in Santa Fe. In 1971, he completed the final stages of becoming a Jesuit at a university in Spain. On the 22nd of April, 1973, Bergoglio vowed his profession as a Jesuit. This was the year he was also granted the position as the Provincial Superior of the Society of Jesus. In 1986, he completed his doctoral thesis in theology in Germany.
In his later years, prior to being titled as pope, he served as an archbishop for the city of Buenos Aires from 1998. Between 2001 and 2003, Bergoglio was the cardinal of the Roman Catholic Church of Argentina and in 2005 became the president of the Bishop’s Conference of Argentina. Pope Francis today is idealised by millions of people for his work for humanity, advocacy for the environment, help for the poor and involvement in political diplomacy.
Interesting Facts about Pope Francis
- When Bergoglio was younger he had to undergo surgery to remove part of one of his lungs. This was due to a serious infection.
- It is said that initially his mother did not support his decision to enter priesthood even though she was a Catholic herself.
- In 2005, Bergoglio was the second most voted for priest to become the pope. Pope Benedict XVI was titled until Pope Francis was elected in 2013.
- Pope Francis was the first citizen from the Americas and first Jesuit priest to be titled pope.
- Pope Francis unlike other pope’s chooses to live a simple lifestyle.
- Before becoming the pope, Bergoglio had served for over 12 years as a archbishop and cardinal.
- Being titled ‘Pope’ is the highest position in the Catholic Church.
- Pope Francis is the first non-European pope in over 1,000 years.
What has Pope Francis Taught Us?
Since 2013, when Pope Francis was first elected he has taught us as Catholics to be more accepting of others and the world around us. Through inspiration he has led many to transform their own lives with his own modern day take on being the Pope. Pope Francis has been noted for his true commitment to the poor, his attempt to close the gap between racism against culture and beliefs, his views on abortion, contraception and same sex marriage, and the fact all should be treated as equals.
In 2016, the Pope urged other priests around the world to be more accepting of people who are homosexual. In this same year, he also vouched for his belief that women should not be priests. In 2017, Pope Francis was the first pope to visit Myanmar, a majorly Buddhist country.
Famous Quotes by Pope Francis
- “If someone is gay and he searches for the Lord and has good will, who am I to judge?”
- “We have to find a new balance; otherwise, even the moral edifice of the church is likely to fall like a house of cards, losing the freshness and fragrance of the Gospel,”
- “Human beings, while capable of the worst, are also capable of rising above themselves, choosing again what is good, and making a new start.”
- “The forgiveness of God cannot be denied to one who has repented, especially when that person approaches the Sacrament of Confession with a sincere heart in order to obtain reconciliation with the Father.”
- “Leave behind the self-interest that hardens your heart, overcome the indifference that makes your heart insensitive towards others, conquer your deadly reasoning, and open yourself to dialogue and reconciliation