With the election of Pope Francis, the 265th successor in an unbroken line from St. Peter the Apostle, the Church received a great gift at a very challenging time in her history.

It was incredible to witness the events unfold in St. Peter’s Square and try to comprehend how truly profound his election is for the Church — and how his choice of name speaks volumes about what we might expect from our new Pope.

I hope you will find our coverage in these pages reflective of the momentous occasion.

Lest we forget, this is also Holy Week. As Pope Francis stated in his first homily, if we aren’t moving toward Christ and his cross, we are moving backward in our spiritual life. Let us heed Pope Francis’ words and properly prepare ourselves for the beauty of Holy Thursday, the solemnity of Good Friday and the anticipation of Holy Saturday, all culminating in the joy of Easter.

We thank God for his gift of the papacy and for Pope Francis, the successor to St. Peter who will lead Christ’s Church. Please join me in heartfelt prayer for the Holy Father and his pontificate.

God bless you!