Local Argentines Celebrate Pope Francis

10:15 PM, Mar 13, 2013   |    comments
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ROCKVILLE, Md. (WUSA9) -- If you live in the D.C. area, when you think of Argentina, you may think of the restaurant El Patio in Rockville, Maryland.

Many say it's the ultimate authentic spot. So, when Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio became the first Argentinean Pope, people at the restaurant were elated.

Guillermo Ribulotta owns El Patio and he's from Argentina. He found out about Pope Francis over the car radio. He said his phone started ringing and ringing.

"From people saying 'it's an Argentinean Pope, did you know, did you know,' we were not expecting it."

Mircelo Kioufios works at El Patio, and came here from Argentina more than a decade ago, "I'm very proud for my country."

The restaurant is also a hub for those with Argentinean roots.

Fabian Magnacca is a Captain in the Argentinean Navy, and he is familiar with the former Archbishop, "He's a very humble, very humble, very simple man."

Many say he's also a conservative one, which is fine by Ribulotta.

"I'm a little conservative in that sense, so I want change, but not a whole lot of change. We don't want a different Catholic Church."

For these Catholics, it was day to celebrate, bond over food, and discuss a man some are already familiar with.

Ribulotta shared this about Pope Francis, "Now, that he's the pope, he'll be able to guide us through he new century."

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