Pope 'in Francis of Assisi's footsteps'Elena Curti and Christopher Lamb in Rome - 15 March 2013
Two South American cardinals have said that Pope Francis' ministry will be characterised by a closeness to the poor in the spirit of St Francis of Assisi.
One of the leading Latin American candidates for the papacy has said that Pope Francis will bring a renewal to the Church.
Brazilian Cardinal Odilo Scherer, Archbishop of Sao Paulo, explained that first South American Pope will bring "a new way of being the Church".
Speaking to The Tablet he said: "You must study St Francis of Assisi to see what will happen. His choice of name is very important."
His remarks were echoed by the Chilean Cardinal Francisco Javier Errazuriz, who told us: "It is clear that this Pope is very close to the poor."
He pointed out that he led the group of Latin American bishops who wrote the 2007 Aparaceida document that stressed social justice and common good.
He added: "Pope Francis is also an intellectual who was studied philosophy, theology and psychology."
When asked about the significance of the Church having its first Pope from the Americas Cardinal Scherer said: "He is a Pope not for Latin America but from Latin America. He is a Pope for the world."
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