Before the mass to celebrate the beginning of his pontificate, Pope Francisco toured St. Pedro square in the “Popemobile”, in the middle of applause of thousands of parishioners and the waving of hundreds of flags.
Francisco made his appearance in the great Vatican Esplanade at 08:50 (07:50 GMT, 02:50 hour of Ecuador) on board of a white jeep, and with the smile that characterizes him, welcomed thousands of faithful who cheered him.
After that he began the mass where he spoke about the duty of the Pope to serve others, “especially the poor, the weak, the small, the hungry, the thirsty, the outsider, the naked, the sick and the imprisoned”, he said.
Francisco also received today, during the ceremony, the fishermnan’s ring and the palio, two symbols of papal authority. Jena Louis Tauran, Cardinal protodeacon, was in charge of placing the the Pallium on Pope Francisco, while Dean Ángelo Sodano, placed the ring of the fisherman.
31 heads of State gathered at this ceremony, including the Prince of Asturias, the President of Argentina, Cristina Fernández and Ecuadorian President Rafael Correa, who attended the ceremony with his mother, and gave a hug to the head of the Catholic Church.
At the end of the mass, the Pontiff greeted 132 delegations around the world, who were in the interior of the basilica of St. Pedro.