On Sunday, tens of thousands of people, many of them children, serenaded the pope on his birthday, Reuters reported. Francis meanwhile, appealed for the release of Catholic nuns kidnapped last month in Nigeria.
The crowd sang “Happy Birthday” in Italian as Francis appeared at the window of the Apostolic Palace overlooking St. Peter’s Square for his weekly message and blessing.
The first Latin American pope was born Jorge Mario Bergoglio on Dec. 17, 1936 in Buenos Aires. He was elected the 266th pope on March 13, 2013. He replaced Pope Benedict XVI, who resigned on Feb. 28, 2013.