UK & World News
Reaction: New Pope Will Be A 'Balancing Force'
The election of Jorge Mario Bergogli as Pope has been greeted with enthusiasm all over the world.
President Barack Obama said: "As the first pope from the Americas, his selection also speaks to the strength and vitality of a region that is increasingly shaping our world, and alongside millions of Hispanic Americans, those of us in the United States share the joy of this historic day."
Prime Minister David Cameron hailed it a "momentous day", while Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O'Connor, the former head of the Roman Catholic Church in England and Wales, said the Pope Francis was an "inspired" choice.
The Archbishop of Westminster Vincent Nichols said: "This is a very exciting moment in the Church for us all.
"To have this Latin American perspective is going to be very refreshing. We've been given a Father in God and a father figure is so important (to Catholics)"
The Argentine daily paper Los Andes expressed the "surprise and excitement throughout the country" at the election of the first Latin American in history to be elected to the most senior position in the Catholic church.
Speaking from St Peter's Square, an Argentinian pilgrim, Francisco Orioli said: "I cannot explain it, this is tremendous. This is the first time I am in Rome and to have an Argentinan pope, it's tremendous."
Another pilgrim, Manuel Arrieta said: "We are very happy as Argentinians, I think he is a very well prepared person and we need to pray for the Holy Spirit and Jesus Christ to give him the strength to lead the Catholic church."
Papal historian Michael Walsh said: "It shouldn't have been a surprise as he was a runner up to Cardinal Ratisinger last time. And given the shortness of the conclave it must be someone that last time round could've been Pope."
Bergogli's biographer Francesca Ambrogetti told Reuters: "His character is in every way that of a moderate.
"He is absolutely capable of undertaking the necessary renovation without any leaps into the unknown. He will be a balancing force."
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