A few days after celebrating the fifty year anniversary of his ordination to the priesthood, Pope Francis is also celebrating his 83rd birthday.
Pope Francis was born Jorge Mario Bergoglio on December 17th, 1936 in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Less than a week after celebrating his priesthood “golden anniversary,” Tuseday he also celebrated his 83rd birthday.
On the occasion, Pope Francis has received congratulations from across the world. President of Italy Sergio Matterella sent his “most sincere and affectionate wishes,” saying his pastoral activity is the “crowning achievement of fifty years of generous priestly service” and his voice “continues to urge peoples and nations to overcome divisions, to preserve peace, to engage in dialogue.”
The President of the Rome branch of the Association of Italian Christian Workers Lidia Borzi thanked the Pope “for having enlightened our gaze, helping us to focus on the need to meet and sustain frailties.”
Millions have sent their congratulations, thoughts, and prayers to Pope Francis on social media, along with thousands of emails and many letters, including one from Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI.
In his Wednesday General Audience to the Faithful in Saint Peter’s Square, he expressed his thanks for the birthday wishes.
“I thank those people everywhere who have sent me their congratulations and good wishes for my fiftieth ordination anniversary and for my birthday. I thank you in a particular way for the gift of your prayers.”
Watch Pope Francis celebrate: