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Popefrancis.com, Owned by Chicago Lawyer, Is Offered to Church

Tuesday, 19 Mar 2013 12:25 PM

By Michael Mullins

Christopher Connors, a Chicago lawyer who three years ago purchased the domain name popefrancis.com, has offered to donate it to the Catholic Church, according to the Chicago Tribune.

The 39-year-old Connors said he purchased the domain in the hopes that a Pope in his lifetime would choose the name in honor of Sainr. Francis of Assisi who pursued a simple existence in service to the poor.

"I thought that at some point in the near future that the names would get more relevant," said Connors, a lifelong Catholic who graduated in 1999 from the Jesuit Loyola University Chicago’s law school. "Nobody names their kids Innocent anymore. And I thought it’d be great if a pope chose Francis after the great saint."

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"I just think he’s got a good message of simplicity, and he embraces poverty," Connors said about the saint. "I really liked the fact that he lived life quietly."

Following the selection of Argentine Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio last week, who chose Pope Francis for his papal name, Connors contacted the Chicago Archdiocese to offer to donate the domain for the church's use.

On Friday, Chicago's Cardinal Francis George received the offer and passed it along to Msgr. Peter Wells, who works in the Vatican’s Office of the Secretary of State, telling the Chicago Tribune, "This is just delightful."

The Vatican has yet to select an official domain name for the new Pope.

Connors said he bought the domain names for "just a couple bucks" through the domain name registrar site GoDaddy.com with the hope that some day Cardinal George would become Pope and keep his baptismal name, reported the Chicago Tribune.

"I told him [Cardinal George] that if Pope Francis wants it, he’s got it. Especially in this age with social media, it might be helpful for him if he’s going to use it. I’d like to see it used."

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Connors primarily represents clients who are whistleblowers seeking to "report anonymously information about corporate bribery, fraud, or corruption to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission," according to his website.

Related stories:

Pope Francis Will Uphold Traditional Catholicism

Pope Francis Slips Out of Vatican for Humble Morning Prayer Visit

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