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Pope Francis is the 266th and current Pope of the Roman Catholic Church, a title he holds ex officio as Bishop of Rome, and sovereign of Vatican City. He chose Francis as his papal name in honor of Saint Francis of Assisi. Francis is the first Jesuit pope, the first from the Americas, the first from the Southern Hemisphere and the first non-European pope since Syrian Gregory III, who died in 741.

Pope
Bishop of Rome
Franciscus in 2015.jpg
Papacy began 13 March 2013
Predecessor Benedict XVI
Orders
Ordination 13 December 1969
by Ramón José Castellano
Consecration 27 June 1992
by Antonio Quarracino
Created Cardinal 21 February 2001
by John Paul II
Personal details
Birth name Jorge Mario Bergoglio
Born (1936-12-17) 17 December 1936 (age 80)
Flores, Buenos Aires, Argentina
Nationality Argentine (with Vatican citizenship)
Residence

Apostolic Palace, Vatican City

Domus Sanctae Marthae
Previous post Provincial superior of the Society of Jesus in Argentina
Auxiliary Bishop of Buenos Aires
Titular Bishop of Auca
Archbishop of Buenos Aires
Cardinal-Priest of San Roberto Bellarmino
Ordinary of the Ordinariate for the Faithful of the Eastern Rites in Argentina
President of the Argentine Episcopal Conference
Motto Miserando atque Eligendo
Signature {{{signature_alt}}}
Coat of arms {{{coat_of_arms_alt}}}
Papal styles of
Coat of arms of Franciscus.svg
Reference style His Holiness
Spoken style Your Holiness
Religious style Holy Father

Pope Francis (Latin: Franciscus; Italian: Francesco; Spanish: Francisco; born Jorge Mario Bergoglio, 17 December 1936) is the 266th and current Pope of the Roman Catholic Church, a title he holds ex officio as Bishop of Rome, and sovereign of Vatican City. He chose Francis as his papal name in honor of Saint Francis of Assisi. Francis is the first Jesuit pope, the first from the Americas, the first from the Southern Hemisphere and the first non-European pope since Syrian Gregory III, who died in 741.

Born in Buenos Aires, Argentina, Bergoglio worked briefly as a chemical technologist and nightclub bouncer before beginning seminary studies. He was ordained a Catholic priest in 1969, and from 1973 to 1979 was Argentina's provincial superior of the Society of Jesus. He was accused of handing two priests to the National Reorganization Process during the Dirty War, but the lawsuit was ultimately dismissed. He became the Archbishop of Buenos Aires in 1998, and was created a cardinal in 2001 by Pope John Paul II. He led the Argentine Church during the December 2001 riots in Argentina, and the administrations of Néstor Kirchner and Cristina Fernández de Kirchner considered him a political rival. Following the resignation of Pope Benedict XVI on 28 February 2013, a papal conclave elected Bergoglio as his successor on 13 March.

Throughout his public life, Pope Francis has been noted for his humility, emphasis on God's mercy, concern for the poor, and commitment to interfaith dialogue. He is credited with having a less formal approach to the papacy than his predecessors, for instance choosing to reside in the Domus Sanctae Marthae guesthouse rather than in the papal apartments of the Apostolic Palace used by his predecessors. In addition, due to both his Jesuit and Ignatian aesthetic, he is known for favoring simpler vestments void of ornamentation, including refusing the traditional papal mozzetta cape upon his election, choosing silver instead of gold for his piscatory ring, and keeping the same pectoral cross he had as cardinal. He maintains that the church should be more open and welcoming. He does not support unbridled capitalism, Marxism, or Marxist versions of liberation theology. Francis maintains the traditional views of the church regarding abortion, euthanasia, contraception, homosexuality, ordination of women, and priestly celibacy. He opposes consumerism, irresponsible development, and supports taking action on climate change, a focus of his papacy with the promulgation of Laudato si'. In international diplomacy, he helped to restore full diplomatic relations between the U.S. and Cuba.