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VATICAN CITY (CBSNewYork) — Cardinal Timothy Dolan of New York spoke Wednesday evening with members of the media following the historic election of the Catholic Church’s new leader. And as usual, the head of the New York Archdiocese quickly got everyone’s attention.
Dolan, who shared his thoughts on the process and selection of Pope Francis, called Argentine Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio, who became the first pontiff from the Americas, “a wonderfully simple man” with whom he was “impressed.”
“He comes across as shy and reserved,” Dolan said, while stressing “He’s a man of confidence and poise.”
“We’ll sleep well tonight, knowing that the church is in good hands,” the Archbishop of New York added.
Dolan also joked when asked if he was relieved that he wasn’t voted pope, saying he never took the rumors seriously.
“I’d like to say this, especially to the New York press: ‘I told ya so!’” Dolan said.
Much has already been discussed about the new pope being a humble man who denied himself some of the luxuries provided to previous cardinals in his country’s capital, Buenos Aires, but his actions Wednesday further hammered home the point.
Bergoglio was known to ride the bus to work in Argentina, and did so going to and from the hotel where the cardinals participating in the conclave stayed this week.
Dolan told reporters the surprising story of how the newly elected pope decided to take the bus back to the hotel Wednesday with the rest of the cardinals instead of riding in the Holy Father’s car.
“So we take the buses over and cardinals kind of wait outside to greet the new Holy Father as he comes back to Doma Santa Marta…and as the last bus pulls up, guess who gets off the bus? Pope Francis,” Dolan said. “So I guess he told the driver, ‘That’s OK. I’ll just go with the guys on the bus.’”
WATCH: Cardinal Dolan Talks About The Choice Of Pope Francis
Dolan also spoke at length about the process to elect a new pope, saying once he got into the conclave he felt the “gentle breeze of the Holy Spirit.”
“As we went in, it [was] just a magnificent, fraternal, apostolic climate and atmosphere to pray together, to talk together, to find out more and more about each other,” Dolan said. “You could just see a sense that this was in God’s hands.”
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