Sacramento Cathedral Bells Welcome Pope Francis I
Wednesday, March 13, 2013
Catholics in Sacramento celebrated the election of a new Pope. Parishioners had varying expectations for a man they knew little about.
The bells at the Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament rang for several minutes in celebration even before anyone knew who had been elected. Father James Murphy says it's very likely Pope Francis will be a Pope of change, "The joke is talk to me on Tuesday, I'll get back to you in 500 years. But, there's been so much talk about that among the Cardinals since the resignation, that it's clear that change is in the air. There's a great feeling of the need for change. And the new Pope has to have gotten that message."
During mass, parishioners learned who their new spiritual leader would be. After mass, Rod Dwyre said he hoped change was not in the offing, "I hope he's not a progressive in the political sense that's going to make all kinds of reforms like our separated brethren in protestant churches that are not only marrying homosexual bishops. You know?"
Father Murphy says the retirement of Pope Benedict may have symbolized the retirement of some the church's old ways, "There's been such widespread discussion of change in the Curia - the way business is done," Murphy said. "It will not be business as usual. I think you'll see big changes in the Vatican beauracracy - I hope more transparency, more effective handling of the sexual-abuse cases."
For Karen Ochoa, the most important thing the new Pope could do is make peace, "Well, as the last Pope indicated, there's a lot of really important decisions that need to be made where the world is going. So, I hope he's able to do that and keep peace among the non-Christians and Christians." When it was pointed out that's a pretty tall order unto itself, laughed, "It's a very tall order, but he has God with him, so hopefully that will be good."
Father Murphy says the new Pope's Latino heritage will help boost the California Diocese. Sacramento's is half Hispanic.
The view inside the cathedral during Noon Mass on Wednesday.