Pope Francis: Simple image, complex past
VATICAN CITY – On the streets in Buenos Aires, the stories about the cardinal who would become the first pope from the Americas often include a very ordinary backdrop: The city bus during rush hour.
Tales are traded about chatting with Archbishop Jorge Bergoglio as he squeezed in with others for the commute to work. They sometimes talk about church affairs. Other times it could be about what he planned to cook for dinner in the simple downtown apartment he chose over an opulent church estate. Or perhaps it was a mention of his affection for the tango, which he said he loved as a youth despite having one lung removed following an infection.
On the balcony of St. Peter’s Basilica just after a rain shower Wednesday – wearing unadorned white robes – the new Pope Francis also appeared to strike the same tone of simplicity and pastoral humility for a church desperate to move past the tarnished era of abuse scandals and internal Vatican upheavals.
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