Pope Francis calls for 'a poor Church for the poor' and reveals St Francis of Assisi as namesake
The new pontiff lauds the saint as a 'man who loves and looks after what has been created'
In an early nod to both climate change and global wealth inequality, the newly-elected Pope Francis has revealed he named himself after St Francis of Assisi.
The Pope, who until recently was known as Jorge Mario Bergoglio, addressed journalists in the Vatican today.
He said that he named himself after the 12th-13th Century son of an aristocrat who forsook riches to live in poverty as a preacher and guardian of nature.
Francis, who ascended to the papacy after Benedict XVI became the first to abdicate the position in 600 years, said St Francis "loved and looked after" creation, noting that humans were "not having a good relationship with nature at the moment".
The 76-year-old, the son of a railway worker, also called for "a poor Church for the poor," and revealed that his "great friend" the Brazilian Cardinal Claudio Hummes hugged and kissed him upon his election and said: "Don't forget the poor."
"Then I immediately thought of Francis of Assisi," he said.
"As the scrutiny was going on and all the votes were being counted, I thought of peace.
"And that's why this name entered my heart, Francis of Assisi. For me he's the man that represents poverty, peace. The man who loves and looks after what has been created.
"A poor man. I'd like a poor church for the poor."
Francis already has a reputation for humility, exhorting the faithful in his Argentine homeland not to come to his official inauguration next Tuesday but to save the money and give it to the poor instead.
And after his election to one of the highest offices on earth, he settled his own hotel bill, turned down the offer to be driven in the papal Mercedes and opted to take a minibus with the cardinals to the Vatican conclave residence.
- 1 Man who held up 'hire me' sign at Waterloo station returns a year later with 'I'm hiring' sign
- 5 This crazy skiing video will leave you feeling queasy
Paris attacks: Do not call Charlie Hebdo killers 'terrorists', BBC says
Rowan Atkinson to sell £10 million McLaren 'supercar' he crashed into a tree and a lamppost
UK weather: Snow to fall in the coming week with sub-zero temperatures to last until early February
Saudi preacher who 'raped and tortured' his five -year-old daughter to death is released after paying 'blood money'
Warriors in ancient Iraq suffered Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder more than 3,000 years ago, say researchers
Nigel Farage: NHS might have to be replaced by private health insurance
'We would evict Queen from Buckingham Palace and allocate her council house,' say Greens
French court convicts three over homophobic tweets, in case hailed as a 'significant victory' by LGBT rights campaigners
George Galloway condemns 'racist, Islamophobic, hypocritical rag' Charlie Hebdo at freedom of speech rally
British Muslim school children suffering a backlash of abuse following Paris attacks
Greece elections: Syriza and EU on collision course after election win for left-wing party
£18000 - £20000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Superb opportunity for a BUYING...
£14560 - £15000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company offers personalise...
Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: A really exciting opportunity has arisen for a...
£22000 - £24000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An established, family owned de...