US bishops welcome 'inspired choice' of new pope

Cardinal Timothy Dolan of New York, who heads the US Conference of Catholic Bishops, has described the choice of the new pope as "a great milestone in our church".

In a statement, he continued:

The bishops of the United States and the people of our 195 dioceses offer prayers for our new leader and promise allegiance to him.

Intense prayer from all around the world surrounded the election of Pope Francis I.

The bishops of the United States thank God for the guidance of the Holy Spirit and the inspired choice of the College of Cardinals.

With joy in our hearts, we declare "Ad Multos Annos!" [For many years!]

– Cardinal Timothy Dolan, president, US Conference of Catholic Bishops