Pope Francis

Pope Francis is the first pope to be elected from the Jesuit order and the first Pope from South America and the Southern Hemisphere. He chose the name Francis in honor of Saint Francis of Assisi, a patron of the poor. Pope Francis has been noted for his humility, emphasis on mercy, concern for the poor, and commitment to interfaith dialogue. The Vatican officially recognized the state of Palestine under his Papacy. Pope Francis also played a vital role in restoring full diplomatic relations between the U.S. and Cuba.

Illustration by Johnny Selman

Vatican City

Vatican City hosts many paintings and sculptural works by classical Italian painters including Titian, Da Vinci and Michelangelo. The colors of many of these paintings remain vibrant today due to the fresco painting technique where paint is applied to wet plaster and is absorbed into the wall when it dries. The colors of this portrait are inspired by both the gold ornament that flows through the Vatican and the brilliant red used in the Coat of Arms of the Holy See.

Total Area
.44 km2 (251st)

Government
Absolute Monarchy
Ecclesiastical & Elective Theocracy

Population
840 (236th)

Capital
Vatican City