Bishop William Callahan of the Diocese of La Crosse says the election of a new pope is "exciting for the diocese."

Bishop Callahan talked about Pope Francis I on News 8 at Five on Wednesday.

He also released the following statement after Pope Francis I was elected:

"With great joy, the Diocese of La Crosse joins with our Catholic brothers and sisters around the world in celebrating the election of Pope Francis I (Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio) as the new successor of St. Peter. We give thanks to God who has given us this Shepherd to lead us and guide us.

We pray that, through the intercession of the Blessed Virgin Mary, God will bless, protect, and strengthen Pope Francis I as he begins his ministry to the universal Church and to the world. Through our new Supreme Pontiff, may the Good News of peace, hope, and salvation continue to reach all the ends of the earth, as we continue in the Year of Faith. May God who has begun this good work in Pope Francis I bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ (cf. Phil 1:6)."