Argentine Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio has been elected pope, the first pontiff from Americas.
The Catholic church has chosen a new pope. It is 76-year-old Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio of Buenos Aires, Argentina.
White smoke is billowing from the chimney of the Sistine Chapel, according to the Associated Press, meaning 115 cardinals in a papal conclave have elected a new leader for the world's 1.2 billion Catholics. The identity of the new pope is not yet known.
The new pope is expected to appear on the balcony of St. Peter's Basilica within an hour, after a church official announces "Habemus Papum'' and "We have a pope'' and gives the name of the new pontiff in Latin.
The conclave was called after Pope Benedict XVI resigned last month, throwing the church into turmoil and exposing deep divisions among cardinals tasked with finding a manager to clean up a corrupt Vatican bureaucracy as well as a pastor who can revive Catholicism in a time of growing secularism.