Do You Pray For A “Conclave Baby?”


Many Catholics hope for a "conclave baby."

Do you personally know anyone by the name of Francis? How about Francisco or Franz?

The next baby shower you attend may be a celebration for a child named after our Church’s new leader, Pope Francis.

A recent satire on explored the concept of “conclave babies,” a trend of similarly-named babies who enter the world in the wake of thrill and faithfulness associated with a new Pope.

“We just thought what a great opportunity to show our support for whomever the new Pope would be,” one (fictional) woman said in the article. 

Her husband explained further, “We saw the white smoke, and then we saw the little cardinal come out on the balcony to announce the name of the new Pope. As soon we heard the name ‘Francis,’ we both looked at each other and just knew.”

Dr. Kevin Williams, Professor of a (made up department) from Catholic University of America, commented in the article: “While not new, this has really picked up in the last three or four decades, beginning nine months after the election of John Paul II when the population of Poland nearly doubled overnight. We witnessed the same effect in Germany in the January 2006.”

Jokes aside, even as a cradle Catholic, this trend of naming children after our Holy Father is completely new to me.

Time will tell if the birth rate in Argentina will really reach epic proportions, or even other regions with a high percentage of Catholics. The name game that all parents unwillingly enter is less shocking as many names gain additional popularity when a prominent figure, much less a new Pope, arrives on the scene.

As single Catholics, what do you think of this trend? Do you know anyone who was named John Paul or Benedict?



  1. Marie-358484 July 25, 2013 Reply

    What a great idea! i do know people who have named their children Benedict and even Maximus for a past pope, talk about great! Wouldn’t it be fun to name twin boys Alphonsas and Ingatius?

  2. Michele-978184 June 6, 2013 Reply

    names could be: Francis, Frances, Francisco, Francesco, Francesca, Frank, Fran, etc. beautiful name, cool patron saint for life

  3. Joanne-846477 March 29, 2013 Reply

    My brother’s name is Francis. Although you won’t see cute little birds perched on his shoulders or arms like the Saint Francis statues depict, he does have chickens in his back yard and he’s a big vegetable gardener.

  4. Mike-646924 March 28, 2013 Reply

    My (good ole) DAD is name Francis!! Fact he’s a JR. Named after his father!! (Francis) Both are with the good Lord! I couldn’t be Prouder of two People!! As for Naming babies after Popes etc. i read where; Its been goin on for centuries! oh yeah and named after saints too!

  5. Diana-672654 March 28, 2013 Reply

    Yes! as a matter of fact I do know a Francis. He’s my godson’s father.! And, they are both wonderful hardworking men.

  6. Katy-303480 March 28, 2013 Reply

    I know two (very devout) couples who have had babies in the last four years and named them Benedict.

  7. Marian-562726 March 28, 2013 Reply

    My father’s name was George and my mothers name is Frances. My siblings got a kick out of the coincidence. And I have a brother who is a Jesuit. Life is interesting

  8. Francisca-851872 March 28, 2013 Reply

    my name is francisca!!! 🙂 I was named after my grandfather, which is just as great!
    blessings to all!!

  9. Pat-5351 March 27, 2013 Reply

    I know of two now young men who were born during JP II’s pontificate, who are named John Paul. I can see doing it if I had a baby at the time!

  10. Suzanne-930338 March 27, 2013 Reply

    My girlfriend named her first son John Paul during JP!! the Great’s pontificate, and son number two (born in June 2005) was named Benedict.

  11. Karmen-681370 March 27, 2013 Reply

    My younger brother’s name is Francis. My older brother’s name is Bennie (Benedict) and my father’s name was John. We have had a pope John then a pope Benedict and now Francis. Quite a co incidence.


  12. Regina-956010 March 26, 2013 Reply

    I know several families who named their sons John Paul after Pope John Paul II.

  13. Michelle-930023 March 26, 2013 Reply

    My late grandmother’s name is Frances. Needless to say, the Pope’s choice brought tears to my eyes. Just so you know, the woman never let a day go by without saying the rosary. That being just one of her good works. Sure it may not mean a thing to the rest of the world, but at the same time I do not doubt for a minute it’s significance in God’s amazing plan which allows for one particular event to take on personal meaning for many an individual, benefiting the salvation of the whole.

  14. Naomi-825244 March 26, 2013 Reply

    I doubt many people would decide to have another child simply because there is a new pope, but during each papal reign there are tons of kids named after the Holy Father. Growing up, I knew at least 6 families with a John Paul or some variation of that name, and several of my friends who had babies in the last 5 years have a son named Benedict, and I fully expect to see more Francises in the near future. Perhaps in 25 years most of the male contingent on CM will be named Francis? 😉

    • Tara-916865 March 27, 2013 Reply

      My brother is Paul John, but those are family names, anyways. Still, one grandpa would be like, “Where’s the Pope?” if my brother wasn’t at a family function. lol

  15. Carrie-529869 March 26, 2013 Reply

    I hope to God everyone knows (including the poster) that this article was a satire on Catholic vote.

  16. Eugene-239335 March 26, 2013 Reply

    My middle name is Francis!!!

Post a comment