Students and priests at Jesuit High School were thrilled to hear the news that Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio, a fellow Jesuit, was elected to be the new leader of the Catholic Church.
The Jesuits, formally known as the Society of Jesus, is the largest order of priests in the world, with 19,000 members.
They are known for missionary work and education. Jesuit universities in the United States include Georgetown in Washington D.C.; Creighton University in Omaha and Loyola University in New Orleans, among many others.
Jesuit High School in Tampa is one of more than two dozen Jesuit high schools in the U.S.
Cheers broke out in the school when news broke Wednesday afternoon. The students and faculty at the Catholic school said that the announcement came as quite a surprise.
"There has never been a Jesuit Pope. We kinda joked about it, but to have it happen today, it was spectacular," said student Marcos Lopez.
Bergoglio, who chose the name Pope Francis, is the first Jesuit pope in history. His choice of names recalls two of the Catholic Church's most famous saints.
One is Francis of Assisi, the man from the Umbrian hill town who renounced a wealthy, dissolute lifestyle to found the Franciscan order of friars in 1209, embracing a life of poverty and simplicity and going out in the countryside to preach a message of joy and peace.
The other is Francis Xavier, a globe-trotting Spaniard who became one of Christianity's greatest missionaries, and was a founding figure of the Jesuit order.
FOX 13 / WTVT-TV
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