NEW YORK – Filipino Americans welcomed the election of Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio of Buenos Aires, a Jesuit, as the 266th pope of the Catholic Church as soon as a white smoke appeared at the Sistine Chapel chimney on Wednesday afternoon.
“I’m happy with news! Viva Santo Papa Francisco I - Un Jesuita!,” said Ner Martinez in an email which he sent immediately after knowing the entity of the new pope. Like other Jesuit-educated Fil Ams in the tri-state area, he is proud of the first Jesuit to take the papal throne. A product of Jesuit-run Ateneo de Manila University, he was previously co-chair of the Ateneo Alumni Association Northeast and is a current board member of the Philippine Independence Day Council, Inc. in New York.