Pope Francis

Vatican

Pope Francis I was born Jorge Mario Bergoglio in Buenos Aires, Argentina, in 1936. As a young man he worked briefly as a chemical technician and nightclub bouncer before being ordained a Catholic priest in 1969. He became the Archbishop of Buenos Aires in 1998 and was created a cardinal in 2001 by Pope John Paul II. Following the resignation of Pope Benedict XVI in early 2013, Cardinal Bergoglio was named his successor on March 13, 2013. He chose Francis as his papal name in honor of Saint Francis of Assisi. Francis is the first Jesuit pope, the first pope from the Americas, the first pope from the Southern Hemisphere and the first non-European pope since the Syrian Gregory III in 741.

Throughout his public life, both as an individual and as a religious leader, Pope Francis has been recognized for his humility, his concern for the poor and his commitment to dialogue as a means to build bridges between people of all backgrounds, beliefs and faiths. He is known for having a humble approach to the papacy and less formal than his predecessors. for instance, Pope Francis chooses to reside in the Domus Sanctae Marthae guesthouse rather than the papal apartments of the Apostolic Palace used by his predecessors.