Church dignitaries praise result of conclave

Cardinal Dominik Duka said the choice of a pope from Latin America was a natural and right development in view of the prevalence of non-European Catholics in the world and the existing disproportion in their representation in the Church leadership. The Archbishop of Olomouc Jan Graubner suggested the election of the first non-European pope indicated a shift in the Roman Catholic Church to more openness and awareness of “what is important on a global scale”. Cardinal Miloslav Vlk pointed out that the name Archbishop Bergoglio had chosen – evoking both St. Francis of Assisi and Francis Xavier – reflected his humble character. Church bells rang out around the Czech Republic on Wednesday evening in celebration of the new Pope.