Pope Francis I has delivered his first Angelus prayer and blessing before a crowd of many thousands gathered in St Peter’s Square in Rome.
The pontiff also delivered off-the-cuff remarks, about God’s power to forgive, instead of reading a written speech.
It was the Pope’s second official appearance before the general public since he was elected on Wednesday.
Earlier, Pope Francis celebrated his first Sunday mass as pontiff in the Vatican’s small and simple parish church.
Before he entered the church, chosen instead of St Peter’s Basilica, Pope Francis greeted well-wishers who had lined up outside a nearby Vatican gate shouting “Francesco” (his name in Italian).
At the end of the Sunday Mass, he waited outside the church and greeted people as they left, like a parish priest, asking many of them to, “pray for me”.
Later, just a few minutes after delivering the Angelus, Pope Francis sent his first Tweet as pontiff, writing: “Dear friends, I thank you from my heart and I ask you to continue to pray for me. Pope Francis.”
First impressions of the new Pope from the faithful on St Peter’s Square have been favorable.“He uses simple words for all people,” said policeman Claudio, who was born in Rome.
“Plus he’s Hispanic and so closer to the Italians.”
The new Pope’s tone is very different to that of Benedict XVI.
Pope Francis’ style is pastoral, he teaches by anecdote and speaks off the cuff with ease, in contrast to the theological sermonizing of Pope Benedict.