CREATED Mar. 13, 2013
Omaha, NE - Wednesday night's mass at Saint John's is extra special for this group of parishioners. Many watched as the white smoke billowed from Vatican City. Cardinals selected a new pope, 76 year-old Jorge Mario Bergoglio and he's certainly a pope of "firsts."
"I like the first Jesuit, the first Francis, the first non-European," Joann Miller said.
Pope Francis is the first pope from Latin America and the first Jesuit. The priest at St. John's is a Jesuit as well. His congregation feels a personal connection to the new pope. "As far as being a Jesuit is concerned, I'm grateful for that because of their spirituality the background of prayer that they have and discernment and that kind of thing so I have great hopes from that perspective," Lucy Hayes said.
Parishioners prayed for the new pope and for the entire church. Although many of them are waiting to see what changes and impact Pope Francis makes, he's already made a positive "first" impression by the selection of his name.
Vatican officials say Bergoglio chose Francis after St. Francis of Assisi because of his love and concern for the less fortunate.
"He lives in an apartment and cooks for himself he knows the poor and he has a sense of justice and it really gives me a lot of hope," Mary Kay Meagher said.