World News -
Pope Francis has been met with accolades and crowds of supporters as he steers the Catholic Church in a new direction.
Pope Francis jokingly told reporters Aug. 19 on a flight back from Seoul that he believes he has "two to three years" to live. Talking on his health he said he may retire the papacy as his predecessor Pope Benedict XVI did, and that he expects it will become "institutional, not exceptional" for future popes to retire.
"The Pope was informed about the tragic accident. He is deeply pained. Pope Francis asks all who share in his grief to unite with him in prayer." Rev Federico Lombardi, Vatican spokesman
The pope cancelled a trip to a Rome hospital June 27 due to an "unexpected indisposition." It's the third time this month the pope has had to scale back his activities due to illness. Pope Francis has several pre-existing conditions including a partial right lung and a bad back.
The pope said he may make at least 3 stops on a proposed trip to the U.S. in 2015: to Washington DC to address Congress; to Philadelphia; and to the UN in NYC. He said he may also visit Mexico during that trip.
Pope Francis celebrated his 77th birthday on Dec. 17, 2013. In the morning, Archbishop Konrad Krajewski (pictured speaking with the pope), asked three homeless men sleeping outside of the Vatican if they would join the pope for his "birthday party" of morning Mass and breakfast.
TIME magazine named Pope Francis as its Person of the Year for 2013. The magazine praised the pope for his humility and eschewing of papal privileges to change the "music" of the Vatican City.
Pope Francis, the first pope from Latin America, was born Jorge Mario Bergoglio. He studied at the Theological Faculty of San Miguel and was ordained a Jesuit in 1969. He completed a doctoral dissertation in Germany and served as a spiritual director in Cordoba.
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