Mar 15, 2013 12:14 AM by Katherine Worsham, KSBY News

Local clergy react to election of Pope Francis

Just one day in to his term as leader of the Catholic Church, all eyes are on Pope Francis.

He celebrated his first mass as pontiff in the Sistine Chapel on Thursday.

Many church experts believe Francis' papacy will be much more conservative than his predecessor's.

Local Catholic clergy members say they're excited to see what Pope Francis will bring to the church.

"Most of the clergy was surprised," said Father Rolando Clarin, of Santa Maria. "I was also surprised. We don't have clear information about Pope Francis."

"Clearly this is a man of the people, and he's going to put an emphasis really on going back to what we do best, and that is serving the poor," said Father Russ Brown, of San Luis Obispo.

"I hope that he will bring about a great sense of what I call the modern world," said Father Matt Pennington, of San Luis Obispo. "We're a very ancient tradition and yet the world is a very contemporary place, and it seems to me we have to have some sort of melding between the two."



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