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30 “Little Reasons” Why We Love Pope Francis on His Birthday!


Antoine Mekary/ALETEIA

Pope Francis - General audience in St. Peter's Square, Vatican, Rome, Italy - 16 Dec 2015

Aleteia - published on 12/17/15

As His Holiness continues to lead the Church, we present a listicle and video of appreciation!
cop with emoji
Jeffrey Bruno/Aleteia

His Holiness seems tireless to us. As he celebrates his birthday — looking quite fit and energetic — the staff of Aleteia offers, in no particular order, this list of “little” reasons we appreciate Pope Francis, but the video at the end may say it all!

1) He popped in to the neighborhood optician to get new glasses.


Pope Francis Holds An Audience With Journalists And The Media
Getty Images/Franco Origlia

His shoes look a little worn, like ours.

3) He is good to his mother, always beginning and ending every trip with a visit to Maria Maggiore and offering prayers.



Sometimes he even brings her presents, like flowers or a soccer ball!

5) He carries a Rosary in his pocket.



His signature is just plain “Francis.” Except, you know, in Latin.

7) With only one lung, he seems tireless.

8) He loves a slice of pizza so much, he’ll



nuns philly papal visit

Nuns swoon over him, like Elvis.

10) Drinks yerba mate on the go,

11) He likes to tango.


mary recommends fiats

He often travels via “Fiat,” a living metaphor!

13) He hugs and kisses people we find hard to look at and challenges us to simply love.


of every human life.



He is Peter, and healings still happen where he walks.

16) He gives free rides in the Pope-mobile.

17) He lost his heart to a pretty girl, but then “I discovered my religious vocation.”

18) He reads Tolkien.


pope holy door africa

He opens Holy Doors like a superhero.

20) The guy who talks all about mercy once worked as a bouncer to pay for his studies.

21) He loves his predecessor, the Pope Emeritus, and quotes him even more than he visits with him.


pope selfie

He is always ready to join in on a selfie.

23) His favorite painting is Chagall’s “White Crucifixion.”

24) He just might pick up the phone and call one of us if he’s in the mood.


pope touch screen

He learned to use a touch-screen from an elementary school student.

26) He blessed thousands of bikers in St. Peter’s Square when they celebrated Harley-Davidson’s 110th anniversary.

27) He shows us how to be merciful in “little” ways, like St. Therese did.


pope emoji times square
Jeffrey Bruno/Aleteia


29) He always asks for our prayers.

30) He loves the babies! Bring him the babies! Let the little children come!

Happy birthday, Papa!

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