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Congratulatory Message to the Newly Elected Pope Francis
from the President of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Korea

We rejoice on the election of His Holiness Pope Francis as the 266th Supreme Pontiff of the Catholic Church.

On behalf of all the Korean bishops and the faithful who thank God for giving us the new Pope, I express our great joy and heartfelt congratulations to His Holiness.

During the Conclave to elect a new Pope, world attention was focused on the Catholic Church. At that time Catholics throughout the whole world prayed with one heart to our Lord that He would give us a spiritual leader fit for the demands of our times.

Now God has entrusted His flock around the world to His Eminence Jorge Mario Cardinal Bergoglio, S.J., Archbishop of Buenos Aires, Argentina. The name Francis that the new Pope has chosen evokes simplicity and evangelical poverty, something he desires. Right after the election, when the new Pope met the faithful assembled in St. Peter’s Square for the first time and before he imparted his apostolic blessing, he asked the assembled faithful to pray that the Lord would bless him. Then he first bowed deeply in silence. We believe that the Pope as Vicar of Jesus Christ will lead the Church on earth and will be an apostle of peace to proclaim good news to the poor and freedom to the oppressed. We sincerely hope that the Catholic Church, with the new Pope Francis as her center, will become a Church that is ever reborn with fresh passion, a Church that will communicate with the world in a humble mind, and a Church that will work for peace.

We, the Korean bishops and the faithful, pray for Pope Francis with all our heart that God may grant His Holiness the wisdom, courage and health needed to implement the Petrine ministry.

In Seoul, Korea
On March 14, 2013

Peter Kang U-il
Bishop of Cheju
President of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Korea



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