Fargo Resident Has Ties to New Pope - Valley News Live - KVLY/KXJB - Fargo/Grand Forks

Fargo Resident Has Ties to New Pope

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The sign of today's white smoke, signifying the end of what can be a worrisome process, came as a relief to many local Catholics.

But, the naming of Pope Francis was even more special for one North Fargo woman.

Valley News Team's Hope Hanselman heard from local Catholics about the day's events and why the message brought tears to one local woman's eyes.

"knowing that a new holy father has accepted and is elected provides a great consolation to the church," Father Luke Meyer, chancellor of the Diocese of Fargo, said.

A two-day long process ended today with much anticipation and a stream of white smoke coming from the Vatican. For many, the end marked a new beginning.

"When I heard about the news I turned on the TV and I heard about it, I just started crying because I felt a great joy," Karin Hillstrom, of North Fargo, said.

Karin grew up Catholic in Buenos Aires, Argentina- the same city former Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio called home, a man who today was named leader of the Catholic faith.

"A pope from South America is a new thing for the church, so we really don't know what to expect," Father Meyer said.

Karin says it's hopeful to see the church looking more into South America versus towards Europe.

She says this religious leader was known for his humility, trading in luxuries for a simple life.

It's a trait other Catholics say is admirable in a leader.

"His direction that he gives is not coming form power-seeking or honor-seeking, it's coming from a place of poverty and simplicity," Father Meyer said.

As Pope Francis takes center stage of one of the most famous religious arenas, thousands of miles away he's shining a light of faith right here in Fargo.

"For us Argentineans to have someone represent us in the whole world, it's very big," Karin said.

The election has another special connection with Fargo.

Pope Francis will appoint the new Bishop of Fargo, a position local catholic leaders have been waiting to fill for nine months.

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