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March 19: Inaugural Mass of Pope Francis

Photo story - from John Vennari in Rome

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Beautiful morning at the Vatican

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The congregation awaits

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Most journalists were decanted onto the Vatican roof


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The new Pope is driven through crowd prior to Mass


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Bishops at Mass

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Pope Francis incenses the altar

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Pope Francis incenses a statue of Our Lady placed on the platform for the Papal Mass


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Huge crowd


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Pope Francis in newly received Pallium


Note from JV: Pope Francis' Papal Mass was celebrated with sobriety and dignity. In the present climate, it is unrealistic to think the Mass would be anything but the Novus Ordo. The music was either organ, chant or brass ensemble; all majestic and dignified. Yes, various priests and laywomen read the "Let us pray to the Lord" prayers at the Offertory. That too is standard fare at the moment.

The most unusual item: the Gospel was chanted in Greek by a priest in Eastern Rite vestments. Associated Press wrote, "In a gesture to Christians in the East, the pope prayed with Eastern rite Catholic patriarchs and archbishops before the tomb of St. Peter at the start of the Mass and the Gospel was chanted in Greek rather than the traditional Latin."

Cardinal Bergoglio, as Archbishop of Buenos Aires, also had been Ordinary of the Ordinariate for the Faithful of the Eastern Rites in Argentina.

As time goes on, we will continue our coverage of Pope Francis.



(all photos by jv)



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