The world’s 1.2 billion Catholics have a new leader. His name is Jorge Mario Bergoglio, but he will be known henceforth as Pope Francis.
After just a day and a half of voting, the 115 cardinal electors locked inside the ornate Sistine Chapel sent a cloud of white smoke up a chimney and into the air over St. Peter’s Square on Wednesday, signaling a conclusive vote—at least 77 of them agreed on a man to succeed Pope Benedict XVI.
Click here to follow Chris Nagus' coverage of the conclave in Rome
News 4’s Chris Nagus has been covering the conclave in the Vatican City, where thousands of people from around the world waited for hours to see the new pope.
Nagus spoke with St. Louis priest, Father Don Anstoetter, who is studying in Rome. Anstoetter said he was just thrilled to be there to see it in person.
“I was on my way class when I heard the pope was elected so I broke into a jog so I’m still out of breath,” Anstoetter said shortly after the results came in.
“I got here in time to see the end of the white smoke now I’m just waiting to see who’s going to walk out,” he said before Pope Francis was introduced.
Anstoetter speaks Italian and helped Nagus interpret the papal blessing.
There will be an installation mass, but the exact date has not been announced. Some rumors indicated that could happen on Tuesday.