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Pope Francis

Pope Francis' complete schedule for Colombia trip

June 23, 2017. He will go to Colombia September 6-11.
Vatican

Bruno Marie Duffé, new secretary of the Department for Integral Development

June 16, 2017. Thepope has named French priest Bruno Marie Duffé, from Lyon, number two of the Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development. He will be in charge of one of the key offices in the Vatican Curia.
Pope Francis

Angela Merkel to meet with pope on June 17

June 9, 2017. The Vatican has confirmed that on Saturday, June 17, German Chancellor Angela Merkel will meet with Pope Francis. Both have previously met in Rome in May 2016, February 2015 and May 2013, two months after Pope Francis was elected pontiff.
Pope Francis

Pope Francis to meet with Venezuelan bishops on June 8

June 5, 2017. Pope Francis will meet with Venezuelan bishops next Thursday to discuss the situation their country is facing.
Vatican

New secretary of the Dicastery for Laity, Family and Life

May 31, 2017. The Brazilian priest Alexandre Awi Mello, the National Director of Brazil's Schönstatt Movement, will serve as the new secretary. He was born Rio de Janeiro in 1971, and ordained a priest in 2001.
Pope Francis

Pope sends condolences and solidarity to Cairo after bus attack

May 26, 2017. Secretary of State, Pietro Parolin, wrote a letter to His Excellency Abdel Fattah Al Sisi after the bus attack Friday in Cairo, which left close to 30 Coptic Christians dead, including children, and many others injured.

Why do Popes change their name?

2013-03-13

The election of each name is a personal decision that can take into account several factors. One of them is affection. It is common for an elected Pope to take the name of a recent predecessor. John Paul I decided to combine the names of John XXIII and Paul VI. Juan Paul II followed by honoring his predecessor.

Benedict XVI referenced in his name Benedict XV, the Pope that had to mediate during World War I.

If the new Pope chooses to follow their example, he could very well choose the name Benedict XVII. It would signal the continuity of the past pontificate. Or with John Paul II, if his inspiration is the intrepid and pastoral spirit of the Polish Pope. He could also choose John XXIV or Paul VII, remembering the Popes of the Second  Vatican Council, which celebrates this year the 50 anniversary of its inauguration.

There are other great Popes that have also generated a great following among successors, like Leo. Leo XIV would be the name of the new Pope if he chooses to honor Leo XIII, the Pope that initiated the Church's social doctrine in the midst of the Industrial Revolution.

Gregory XVII could be the name for a Pope that wants to reform the structure of the Church to make it more efficient. St. Gregory the Great and Saint Gregory VII could serve as references.

However, there is also the chance the new Pope could break new ground and choose a new name. John Paul I did so after nearly 1,000 years. The last original name introduced by a Pope was Lando I in the year 913.

If the new Pope wanted to introduce a new name, he could very well opt for a name with a strong Christian tradition that has not been used before. Among the possibilities are Louis, Francis, Xavier, Ignatius or Thomas. They all evoke saints and would like be welcomed by Catholics.


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