If it is the cross he wore as a bishop, it is a good indication that Pope Francis will think of himself more as a bishop’s Bishop, and a Bishop to the Church, rather than as a Cardinal or Pope of the Curia and of the Church.
Evidently, this seems to be supported by referring to Emeritus Pope Benedict as ‘bishop’, and himself as ‘bishop’ yesterday.
I did hear last night that he comes from, or is close to the Eastern church. The Orthodox Church came to mind right away. I do hope both Churches come together and unite. That would be such a delight for us here and in heaven.
Oh yes, he seems to be very much in love with the dignity of the Bishop, without emphasis on the title “pope” given to the Bishop of Rome. Someplace else we discussed how he chose not to wear the red mozzetta typical of the newly elected Pope, nor did he put on the Papal stole except for the Apostolic Blessing. Notice how he spoke of Benedict XVI as “Bishop Emeritus”, how he referred to himself as the bishop of Rome, how he emphasized that the Church of Rome presides in charity (employing the language of the Church Fathers).
And did you catch his very first statement?
You all know that the duty of the Conclave was to give a bishop to Rome.
True, but it’s a wonderful way to put it, to emphasize that the light is on the Episcopal See of the Bishop of Rome, not on the title of Pope.
Notice furthermore how he says:
I thank you for the welcome that has come from the diocesan community of Rome
but then he says
let us begin this journey, the Bishop and people, this journey of the Church of Rome, which presides in charity over all the Churches
And the most impressive (to me) remarks:
My hope is that this journey of the Church that we begin today …] be fruitful for the evangelization of this beautiful city. …] Tomorrow I want to go to pray the Madonna, that she may protect Rome.
And indeed he prayed today before the Salus Populi Romani (the sacred Marian image displayed in St. Mary Major Basilica), the “Protectress of the Roman People”, and a Byzantine icon of the Madonna and Child reputed to date to the Early Christian era.
Pope Francis has very clear ideas in mind, and I am overwhelmed by the profoundness of every word, and of how one phrase relates to the other.
The figure at the very top, above the Holy Spirit, is a separate piece, the “bail” to hold the cross onto the chain. Given his devotion to Mary, it might be an image of her, as on the centerpiece of a rosary.
I read in one report in the UK press (sorry, I have read so many in the last 24hrs that I cannot remember which one :o ) that he has had the cross since he became a Bishop in 1992 and that it is made out of base white metal.
I agree completely. I noted on another thread (after someone commented that it was like one that St. Peter would have worn): We as a Church are no longer so persecuted that it should behoove the King of the Apostles and Supreme Pontiff to hide elegance. I suppose it is just an abrupt change from Benedict XVI.
I am willing to adjust but I was pretty much raised seeing Benedict XVI, I was ten or so when he was Elected so I’ve only seen Benedict XVI’s grace with elegance. Francis, however, seems to have a more simple grace.