Pope Francis connects with Jesuit community in Idaho

Pope Francis connects with Jesuit community in Idaho

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by Karen Zatkulak

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KTVB.COM

Posted on March 19, 2013 at 4:01 PM

Updated Thursday, Dec 5 at 1:08 AM

BOISE -- Thousands packed St. Peter's Square at the Vatican for a special mass, marking the inauguration of Pope Francis on Tuesday morning.

Pope Francis is the first Jesuit priest to be a leader of the Catholic Church, and it's a background that connects him to a small community in Boise.

"Someone who definitely brings love of people and love of God, that was the message I took away from those first few moments," says Christy King.

King is a former Jesuit volunteer.  She spent two years serving in Peru, learning from Jesuit priests.

There are currently six Jesuit volunteers completing a year of service in Boise, ministering to more than 7,000 people.

King says the order that was founded long ago by St. Ignatius of Loyola.

She says it's one that has a special connection to our state as well.

"Even in Idaho, the Jesuit priests were the first Catholics to come to what is now Idaho, so there is some local history as well, they were referred to as the black robes," says King.

King explains the Jesuit order focuses on a simple lifestyle, spirituality, social justice, and taking care of the poor and weak in the community.

She says it takes a rigorous education of eight to ten years to become a Jesuit priest.

"I'm hoping that this pope will bring us all closer to God in the way that he loves everyone," says King.

Members of the small Jesuit community in Boise say it's a background they hope will bring the positive change the Catholic Church is looking for.

"His simplicity, his former lifestyle, I think that's awesome, and I think that will help us remember our basic foundations of Christianity," says Maricela Rios.

Pope Francis is the former Archbishop of Buenos Aires, Argentina.

After Tuesday's mass, Pope Francis will meet with world leaders.

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