I didn't join the Catholic church until 2007. I have vague memories of watching white smoke on the news in 2005 but at that time, it wasn't too meaningful to me.
Yesterday as I was doing things around the house, I would occasionally go into the office to check the Pope Smoke Cam on the computer. I never keep the TV on during the day so I thought checking on the computer would be a great way to see the smoke as it billowed out.
I checked it again around 2:05ish and then decided I need to finish up a couple of things quickly before heading out to get gas and then get the kids from school.
At 2:08 my phone rang. It was my mom (a lifelong Protestant) and she was excitedly saying, "There's white smoke! There's white smoke! Are you watching? Turn to CNN right now! Right now!"
Dang it! I was watching the smoke cam mere minutes earlier. I really wanted to see the very first puffs. I guess I should have just parked myself in front of the TV all day.
So I turned to CNN and watched the beautiful white smoke billowing from the smoke stack of the Sistine Chapel.
I watched for a few minutes but I really needed to get gas and get my kids.
I turned on the radio searching for a channel that would be covering this so I could hear first hand at least, who the new Pope would be.
And of course, I found nothing. So at the gas station I quickly down loaded the CNN radio app to my phone and listened to the news reports live from Rome as I was driving to pick up my kids.
As they piled into the car, I exclaimed, "We have a new Pope!" They, of course, already knew since they do go to a Catholic school.
"Who is it? What's his name?" they questioned.
So we listened to the radio reports until they finally, finally, announced Jorge Mario Bergoglioni!
Peter wanted it to be someone from the US but seemed pleased that at least it was a non-European.
Sarah didn't seem to care one way or the other who it was.
We all liked the name Francis.
After school we went straight to Peter's guitar lesson. My phone rang and it was my mom again.
"Have you heard who it is?? He's just the cutest thing. He looks so sweet! I have tears in my eyes!" sang out my mom's voice.
Quite certain my Mom would make a great Catholic!