With a puff of white smoke, the Catholic Church redefined “March Madness.”
Wednesday’s announcement of Pope Francis, formerly Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio of Argentina, brought together many of our Franciscan Media staff, cramming our conference room to watch the live feed online.
We were tweeting, Facebooking, calling, e-mailing, and taking photos of the screen where we usually talk to our colleagues via Skype or call up web pages during meetings.
Having spent years in sports journalism, I’m accustomed to crowding with colleagues around a TV to watch drama unfold—but usually it’s the ninth inning of a Reds game or the closing seconds of a college basketball matchup. This new experience was very different! Yet in many ways, the excitement was the same.
I didn’t expect to be so interested, so compelled by the suspense of waiting for the announcement. But our whole team watched in anticipation, guessing at the outcome and wondering about the future.
When the news came, we were thrilled. Of course, a new pope is exciting in and of itself, but a pope named Francis—now, that is something!
We here at Franciscan Media couldn’t be more pleased. We suspect the new pope, a Jesuit, sees in St. Francis the same admirable and wonderful characteristics that we do, and that gives us all a very good feeling about what our leader will bring to the Church.
Godspeed, Pope Francis!
Photo: A cell-phone shot taken of the computer screen in the Assisi conference room at Franciscan Media in Cincinnati, Ohio.