Broken heart may have led Pope Francis to priesthood

Broken heart may have led Pope Francis to priesthood

Amalia Damonte, 76, grew up in the same Flores neighbourhood of Buenos Aires as Jorge Bergoglio and said that when the Pontiff was 12, he wrote a letter declaring his love.

Speaking to Argentinian TV, she said: “He said that if I didn’t say yes, he would have to become a priest. Luckily for him, I said no.

“He had a crush on me … We used to play on the streets here. It was a quiet neighbourhood then. He was very nice.”

“We were 12, 13 years old, no more than that,” she said. “He was wonderful. He was a proper guy.”

She said when she found out her former admirer had been made the first non-European pope for 1,300 years, she was shocked.

The pensioner said: “I froze in front of the television. I couldn’t believe that Jorge was the Pope!”

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