BREAKING: Bishop of Lincoln Rt Revd Christopher Lowson welcomes election of new Pope Francis I at the Vatican

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The Bishop of Lincoln has said the election of new Pope Francis I has brought “a renewed sense of hope and purpose” to the world’s 1.2 billion Catholics.

Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio was named as the new Pope this evening after winning a two-thirds share of the vote among Cardinals within St Peter’s in the Vatican.

Reacting to the election the Bishop of Lincoln, the Rt Revd Christopher Lowson, said that the Diocese of Lincoln would continue to hold “the new Pope and our Roman Catholic brothers and sisters in prayers”.

He said: “The election of a new Pope is a wonderful occasion for the Roman Catholic Church and the Christian world as a whole.

“This newly-elected Pope brings to the 1.2 billion Roman Catholics worldwide a renewed sense of hope and purpose as they are led into the future.

“Jorge Mario Bergoglio, now Pope Francis, is known to live very simply and to have a committed approach to poverty. While the world is dealing with its financial crisis, such an appointment has to be greatly welcomed.

“The Diocese of Lincoln will continue to hold the new Pope and our Roman Catholic brothers and sisters in prayers.”