Argentina's Jorge Bergoglio, elected Pope Francis I (C) appears at the window of St Peter's Basilica's balcony after being elected the 266th pope of the Roman Catholic Church on March 13, 2013 at the Vatican. (ANDREAS SOLARO/AFP/Getty Images)
White smoke emerges from the chimney atop the Sistine Chapel at the Vatican Wednesday, signaling the election of a new pope. (Getty Images)
VATICAN CITY -- Jorge Mario Bergolio, Archbishop of Buenos Aires, has been chosen as the new pope. He has taken the name Pope Francis I.
Pope Francis I becomes the first pontiff selected from the Americas, and the first from outside Europe in more than a millennium.
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After announcing `'Habemus Papum" - `'We have a pope!" - a cardinal standing on the balcony of St. Peter's Basilica on Wednesday revealed the identity of the new pontiff, using his Latin name. Bergoglio had reportedly finished second in the 2005 conclave that produced Benedict XVI - who last month became the first pope to resign in 600 years.
Pope Francis will visit his predecessor Benedict XVI on Thursday at the papal retreat in Castel Gandolfo south of Rome.
The 76-year-old archbishop of Buenos Aires has spent nearly his entire career at home in Argentina, overseeing churches and shoe-leather priests.
One of five children, Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio was the son of an Italian railway worker and his wife. He has been the Archbishop of Buenos Aires since 1998 and was a front-runner after the death of Pope John Paul II. Known as a conservative, he has recommended that his clergy oppose both abortion and the legalization of gay marriage but does teach the importance of respecting individuals who are gay.