20 Awesome facts about Argentina’s Most Famous Citizen: Pope Francis
As part of the World Cup for Kids project, part of Multicultural Kid Blogs, I bring you 20 fascinating facts about the most popular Argentine today: Pope Francis, the leader of the Catholic Church. As a (somewhat lapsed) Catholic, I have to say, I was super excited that a Latin American cardinal had become pope. I find him to be extremely approachable, (liked I’d probably want to have dinner and a chat with him) and I love that he has chosen to lead a simple life.
Here are 20 fascinating facts about Jorge Mario Bergoglio, now known as Pope Francis:
1. Pope Francis is the first pope from Latin America in the Roman Catholic Church’s history. (Took them long enough!)
2. Pope Francis speaks three languages: Spanish, Italian and German.
3. He chose his name, Francis, after St. Francis of Assisi, known for leading a simple life and being kind to animals.
4. He is an avid soccer fan. He supports San Lorenzo in Argentina.
5. Pope Francis is known for leading a simple life, and refusing many extravangancies Popes were accustomed to.
6. Pope Francis was born in Buenos Aires, to Italian parents.
7. He is a friend to Islam and Judaism, and invited leaders of both faiths to the Vatican.
8. He is a Jesuit.
9. In late 2013, Pope Francis was named TIME Magazine’s Person of the Year.
10. He does not wear the special red shoes that a Pope normally years, he wears his regular black shoes.
11. Pope Francis has three citizenships: from Argentina, Italy (jus sanguinis, birthright due to his parents) and the Vatican.
12. Due to an infection when he was in his early 20s, Pope Francis had to have one lung removed. He has only one lung.
13. Pope Francis likes to visit the less fortunate. He celebrated his first Holy Thursday Mass in a youth prison in Rome, and forbid any media to attend.
14. His favorite painting is The White Crucifixion by Marc Chagall. Why is this cool? Because I happen to think Chagall is awesome, which means we have something in common!
15. He traveled to the conclave in economy class.
16. He used to have a girlfriend and loved to dance tango, before he received the call to lead religious life.
17. He is NOT Pope Francis I. He is only Pope Francis. He will become Pope Francis I the day that another pope decides to also take on the name Francis.
18. He was a bouncer at one point in his life, to pay for his studies.
19. As Pope, he was vowed that he will have zero tolerance for sexual abuse in the Church.
20. Pope Francis is on Twitter… in multiple languages. (Seriously, how cool is that?)
pinnable image photo credit: By Presidência da Republica/Roberto Stuckert Filho (Agência Brasil) [CC BY 3.0 br (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/br/deed.en)], via Wikimedia Commons