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Pope Francis’ First Words

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

“Qui Sibi Nomen Imposuit Franciscum”

Brothers and sisters, good evening!

You know how the duty of the Conclave is to give a bishop to Rome. It seems that my brother cardinals have gone to take him from the edge of the world… but here we are.

I thank you for your welcome. The diocesan family of Rome has your bishop: thank you! And before anything else, I’d like for us to pray for our bishop-emeritus, Benedict XVI. Let us pray together for him, that the Lord bless him and Our Lady keep him in her care….

Our Father….

Hail Mary….

Glory Be….

And now, together, let us start this road: bishop and people. This [new] path of the church of Rome, which “presides in charity” [over] all the churches. A path of brotherhood, of love, of trust between us. Let us pray always for ourselves: one for the other. Let us pray for all the world, that we all might know a great fraternity. I wish you that this journey as Church, that we begin today and on which my Cardinal-Vicar [of Rome] will help me, might be fruitful for the evangelization of this beautiful city!

And now I’ll give you my blessing… but first – first, I ask you this favor: before the bishop blesses his people, I ask that you pray to the Lord that he might bless me: the prayer of the people, seeking God’s blessing for their bishop. In silence, let’s please make a prayer for me….

*Pope Bows to crowd*

Now I give my blessing to you and all the world – to all men and women of good will….

Brothers and sisters, I leave you, but only for now. Many thanks for your warm welcome. Please pray for me often!

I’ll see you soon – tomorrow I want to go pray to Our Lady [Salus Populi Romani – her shrine at St Mary Major], because she’s the one who cares for Rome.

Good night and sleep well!