‘The still strange-sounding Pope Francis may or may nor mark a change of fortune for the name. Either way, I’m sorry my mother didn’t quite live to see the development: she would have been thrilled. She might even have startedcalling me by the full version again, without waiting for visitors.’ Photograph: Andrew Medichini/AP Photo

A few days before the papal election, by coincidence, I received a phone-call from a bank official who kept calling me “Francis”. It wasn’t a s(...)