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Special Mass in Allentown to celebrate Pope Francis

Published On: Mar 14 2013 11:19:57 AM EDT   Updated On: Mar 14 2013 12:10:27 PM EDT
Catholic Mass changes

Catholics in Allentown will celebrate a special Mass for the new pope.

In thanksgiving for the election of Pope Francis, Diocese of Allentown Bishop John Barres will celebrate a Mass of Thanksgiving Thursday evening.

The Mass will be at the Cathedral of Saint Catharine of Siena at 18th and Turner streets in Allentown at 7 p.m.


The Mass will be open to the public.

Bishop Barres joined us live Thursday morning on 69 News at Sunrise to talk about the transition.

He said the pope will help represent the growing Latino population in the church and he said the decision to be called Francis is fitting since St. Francis was a reformer and an advocate for the poor.

"Pope Francis is following in the footsteps of St. Francis. He's teaching us about church reform and interior conversion," said Bishop Barres. "He's telling us that the poor are the treasures of our Catholic Church."

Sister Elonia Alvarez from the Kennedy House in Reading said she met Pope Francis when he was a priest in Argentina.

She said he is a very humble man with an excellent reputation for helping the poor.