Pope Francis – the first Jesuit pope – has spent nearly his entire career at home in Argentina.
He has long specialized in the kind of pastoral work – overseeing churches and priests – that some say is an essential skill for a pope.
In a lifetime of teaching and leading priests in Latin America, which has the largest share of the world’s Catholics, the former Bergoglio has shown a keen political sensibility as well as a self-effacing humility, according to his official biographer, Sergio Rubin. His personal style is the antithesis of Vatican splendor.
Bergoglio is also known for modernizing an Argentine church that had been among the most conservative in Latin America.