Pope Francis put his humility on display during his first day as pontiff Thursday, stopping by his hotel to pick up his luggage and thank the staff. It was a decidedly different style of papacy than that of his tradition-minded predecessor, Benedict XVI, who tended to stay ensconced in the frescoed halls of the Vatican.
A crowd was on hand to greet him Thursday morning when Francis showed up at the Vatican-owned residence where he routinely stays during visits to Rome and where he stayed before the start of the conclave
‘‘He wanted to come here because he wanted to thank the personnel, people who work in this house,’’ said the Rev. Pawel Rytel-Andrianek, who is staying at the residence. ‘‘He greeted them one by one, no rush, the whole staff, one by one.’’
He then paid the bill.
The break from Benedict XVI’s pontificate was evident even in Francis’ wardrobe choices: He kept the simple iron pectoral cross of his days as bishop and eschewed the red cape that Benedict wore when he was presented to the world for the first time in 2005 — choosing instead the simple white cassock of the papacy.
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