March 16, 2013. (Romereports.com) “How I would like a poor Church, for the poor,”
said the Pope.
Pope Francis left no doubt about what his focus will be during his pontificate as the first Latin American Pope for the Catholic Church. Speaking to the more than 5,000 journalists at the Paul VI Hall
, Francis also explained how that focus on the world's most needy influenced his name choice.FRANCIS “During the election, next to me was Cardinal Claudio Hummes, a great friend. When the 'danger' grew, he would comfort me. And when we reached two thirds, Cardinal Hummes hugged me and kissed me saying, 'Do not forget about the poor,' so then in my mind I immediately thought of Francis of Assisi.”
During his speech, he often went off script and made several jokes
. At one point, he said a fellow cardinal suggested he take on the name Clement XV to rebuke Pope Clement XIV who suppressed the Jesuits
, the crowd roared with laughter and applause.
He also used the relatively brief speech to speak about the media's role, saying they shared the Church's mission of spreading truth, beauty and kindness.
After his speech, he greeted the members of the Pontifical Council for Social Communications, as well as several journalists. The director for the Vatican's webpage gave him an iPad, to enable him to follow Benedict's example in using technology
to reach out to others for the New Evangelization.
To conclude the audience with journalists, he uttered his first words in his native Spanish, issuing a blessing to believers and non-believers alike.FRANCIS“Many of you do not belong to the Catholic Church, and others are not believers, but respecting the conscience of each person, I give you my blessing, knowing that each one of you is the son of God. God bless you!”