Catholics, non-Catholics, and church leaders from across Eastern Carolina are all reacting to the selection of a new Pope, the first from the Americas.
Argentine Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio is the first Pope outside of Europe in over 1,000 years and the first to be named Francis.
Father Justin Kerber of St. Peter's Catholic Church in Greenville says, "I think this is really a wonderful thing for the church and I think this is a beautiful tribute to the work of God."
Alice Escallier who is a Christian but not Catholic, says, "The sacredness and holiness of it all is very impressive to all Catholics as well as non-Catholics."
Janel Saeed is Catholic and says, "They're not gonna change the whole thing, the doctrine is still gonna be the same. It's just kind of the gift of the holy spirit maybe of the direction that they want to go."
Father Arturo Cabra of Mother of Mercy church in Washington is originally from Colombia, and says he is very happy the new Pope is from his continent. He says having a Pope from Latin America, "Will prove to be a great advantage to Latin American countries."
Father Cabra says Pope Francis is, "A Pope that understands the poor, understands the conditions of the continent, and speaks the language."
He says as the Catholic church moves forward, he feels Pope Francis is the right man for the job. "We need to go back to the beginning, the simplicity of the gospel. And Francis is the one who can lead us in that direction."
Monsignor Gerald Lewis of Saint Paul's Catholic Church in New Bern told us, "There's not going to be any dramatic changes, but there will be a small evolving of changes, and inclusions of other peoples. It's just a different mentality. I'm hoping he's going to bring a reform to the church and that he will be a real missionary to the world so we'll pray about that and wait and see."
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