Local Residents React to New Pope
The new pope is 76-year-old Jorge Mario Bergoglio from Argentina, to be known simply as Pope Francis.
On Wednesday, the world greeted a new pope -- Pope Francis.
The new pope, Jorge Mario Bergoglio of Argentina, is the first elected from Latin America.
Throughout the nation, and here in Lilburn, people reacted to the news. There are some 67,700 Catholics in Gwinnett County.
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Maria Buzonas, 46, who teaches at St. John Neumann Regional Catholic School in Lilburn, said students were watching the news all day.
"I'm very excited," she said. "It shows the Catholic Church is progressing. I'm happy he's a pastor priest" who has led a congregation before.
She said she hopes the church focuses on making its message clear worldwide and explaining what the church "really stands for."
"I want him to keep with tradition but with all the new technology available be able to get that word out across the world about what the Catholic Church is all about."
Nick Masino, Gwinnett Chamber Vice President, said it is an exciting time for Catholics.
"The new pontiff has challenges that need to be addressed," he added. "The church has a bright future if they are dealt with effectively."
Atlanta Archbishop Wilton Gregory, speaking in Rome on ABC News, commented on how Pope Francis had asked for people around the world to pray for him. "I think at that moment he won the heart of all of the Romans, if not of all of the world. He is a holy man."
Gregory said that the Cardinal has a reputation of personal holiness, "that he is so committed to serving the poor, living simply; calling people to holiness in such a simple way that it is almost impossible to say 'no.'"
Jonathan Cribbs, editor of North Druid Hills - Briarcliff Patch, contributed to this report.