Announcing earlier this month that he would like to make a pilgrimage to Sicily in September, now the Holy Father would like to make a pilgrimage to Assisi. (My guess is he’ll do both on the same pilgrimage as a way to save a couple bucks.) One doesn’t have to reach very far to conclude that he’ll probably offer himself and his papacy to the poor saint from Assisi’s intercession.
After his election, Pope Francis explained in his first audience with journalists in Rome, why he chose the name of the “Poor One of Assisi.” Upon confirmation that he had received the majority of votes to the papacy, Cardinal Claudio Hummes, Archbishop Emeritus of Sao Paolo and friend of the Holy Father, told the newly elected Pope: “Don’t forget the poor.”
“And those words came to me: the poor, the poor,” Pope Francis told journalists on March 16th. “Then, right away, thinking of the poor, I thought of Francis of Assisi. Then I thought of all the wars, as the votes were still being counted, till the end. Francis is also the man of peace. That is how the name came into my heart: Francis of Assisi.”