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Rome Reports

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It's Pope Francis' 79th birthday!

Pope Francis is celebrating his 79th birthday. And although they were early, Pope Francis received plenty of congratulations yesterday at his general audience. Some people brought him cake, like this Mexican journalist. She was just returning the favor: the Pope did the same for her during a papal flight. Jorge Mario Bergoglio was born on December 17, 1936. Today marks his third birthday as Pope Francis. His previous birthdays at the Vatican always had a special touch. When he turned 77, he ate breakfast with three homeless people who live near St. Peter's Square. Last year, his 78th birthday coincided with his Wednesday general audience. The pilgrims didn't miss the opportunity to show their affection. This group of Legionnaires of Christ brought the Pope a cake and sang for him. But that wasn't all. This massive tango dance was also organized in the Pope's honor. The big story of that day was that the United States and Cuba had begun to reestablish diplomatic relations after more than 50 years. Both Barack Obama and Raul Castro personally thanked the Pope for his involvement. It was probably one of the best gifts for someone who constantly stresses the need for a "culture of encounter.� AC/ATO RR VM -BN Up:JRB #Popefrancis