BALLWIN, MO. (KTVI) - The students and staff of Holy Infant Catholic School in Ballwin watched the naming of the new pope with some added interest.
They knew it was possible that former student and current New York Cardinal Timothy Dolan could be named as the new pope.
That didn't happen. When the announcement was made that Pope Francis is the church's new leader, there were still plenty of cheers. Sister Rosario Delaney is the school principal. She was especially surprised because it just so happens that the school has a statue of St. Francis in its garden.
"On the feast of St. Francis we bring small groups out and tell them the story of St. Francis," explained Delaney. "There will be bigger groups now."
Several students expressed enthusiasm over the fact that their new pope is from Argentina.
"It was exciting because he's the 1st South American Pope," said Holy Infant 7th grader Jillian Baker.
Carrie Wolf was so moved by the announcement that she brought her children to the St. Francis statue and set flowers next to it.
"Pope Francis is such a man of humility and peace so we're very excited about this," said Wolf.
Diane Vilbig was hoping Cardinal Dolan would be the new pope but she`s pleased with her new Catholic leader.
"He's very humble, very pastoral," said Vilbig. "I'm real happy about it."
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