Here's what they had to say:

Brother Charles Hilken“His taking the name of Francis reinforces what we already know about him as an advocate for the poor and for social justice issues."

-Brother Charles Hilken, professor of history and noted Vatican scholar, on KGO Radio.

Father Michael Russo“I was struck by the new pope's authenticity and expect him to bring the Church back to its historical mission of servicing the needs of individuals, praying with people, being an authentic witness to Christ.”

-Father Michael Russo, a professor of communication and former CBS News religion consultant, on KQED Forum and KPIX-TV.

Professor Tom Poundstone“It’s more moving than any kind of rock concert would be. (The students) all talked about how it's something that not only would they never forget, but far more emotionally stirring than they ever anticipated... Pope Francis' tremendous sense of simplicity and love for the poor is something that Christians and non-Christians alike can rally around"

-Theology Professor Tom Poundstone, in Rome with 23 students, told the San Francisco Chronicle that, on hearing the news, they rushed to Saint Peter's Square.

Media Outlets Turn To SMC Faculty For Insight On New Pope

Brother Charles Hilken being interviewed by KTVU

A variety of media outlets, including KCBS, KGO and KQED radio, KPIX and KTVU TV and the San Francisco Chronicle tapped several Saint Mary's professors for their insights about the election of Pope Francis, the first non-European pontiff in the modern era. The Argentinian Cardinal, 76-year-old Jorge Mario Bergoglio was elected as the first pope from the Americas on March 13 and will lead the world's 1.2 billion Catholics after the historic resignation of Pope Benedict.   

Saint Mary's, communication professor Rev. Michael Russo joined several religious scholars in a discussion on KQED's Forum about the new pope, possible reforms of the church and Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio's choice of the name, Pope Francis, to recognize St. Francis of Assisi.

Fr. Mike was also interviewed by KPIX-TV's Ann Notarangelo on two occasions, where he discussed the process of the conclave of cardinals and after the announcement of the new pope, he spoke with her about the election of the first Jesuit priest as the new pope and what to expect from the first non-European pontiff.

KGO radio correspondent Beth Houston visited the campus and chronicled reaction in the College's Mission and Ministry Center when the Vatican released the news of the first pope from Latin America.  Houston spoke with Russo, SMC history professor and chair of the Bishop Cummins Institute Brother Charles Hilken and several students about their reactions to the new pontiff. Hilken was also featured on KGO's morning news program the day after the historic announcement of Pope Francis.

KTVU-TV correspondent Cara Liu also spoke with Hilken about the new pontiff on the afternoon of Cardinal Bergoglio's appointment and during the following morning's news program.

Additionally, theology and religious studies professor Tom Poundstone, who is on sabbatical in Rome, spoke with KCBS radio about his impressions of the election of Pope Francis and was also quoted in a story by the San Francisco Chronicle.

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A New Pope.
Date of Mention:
Thursday, March 14, 2013