Pope Francis' longtime friend opens up

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  • Father Hernan Paredes has known Pope Francis for 30 years
  • Paredes recalls "Padre Jorge" cooking for 100 seminarians and washing their clothes

Quito, Ecuador (CNN)To the 1 billion Catholics in the world, Pope Francis is their Holy Father. But longtime friend and fellow Jesuit priest Hernan Paredes still calls him "Jorge."

And, the Pope, who's known for breaking with tradition, is fine with that.
Father Paredes has known Francis for 30 years, dating back to when the pontiff was only known as "Padre Jorge," for his given name, Jorge Mario Bergoglio.
    In an interview with CNN's Rosa Flores in Quito, he opened up about his friendship with the Pope.
    Paredes served as a seminarian in the mid-1980s under Bergoglio. At the time, the future Catholic leader was the head of the Jesuit seminary in Buenos Aires.
    As part of his job, he would wash the clothes of all 100 seminarians, as well as cook for them.
    "Every Sunday, we had 'asadito' -- a lot of meat and Pope Francis was the chef. It was something simple; but, still it was a lot of work for one person cooking for others," said Paredes.
    The Argentine pontiff may be a master in the kitchen, but Paredes says English class wasn't his forte, and it was a challenge for him to learn the language.
    Of course, while in Latin America this week, that won't be an issue as he is fluent in Spanish. He's expected to celebrate all the Masses in Ecuador, Bolivia and Paraguay in his native tongue. During his weeklong trip, the Pope is expected to share a message of hope, concern for the poor and care for the environment.
    But, before Francis arrives in the United States in September, he will need to freshen up on his "Inglés." That's because he has been invited to speak in English, addressing a joint session of Congress as well as at the United Nations in New York.
    The eyes of the world will be on the pontiff's message during that trip, especially given his penchant for surprising comments about controversial topics. "Who am I to judge?" was the famous phrase the Holy Father uttered, when asked about homosexuality.
    This time around, on the heels of the U.S. Supreme Court's ruling on same-sex marriage, Paredes said he doesn't know whether Francis will comment on the decision, but he does expect the Pope to speak in favor of the traditional family.
    "Remember that the tradition of the Church doesn't change overnight; but, he acknowledges that there are other ways of living," Paredes said.
    Before he arrives on U.S. soil, Pope Francis will visit the communist island of Cuba -- the third straight pontiff to do so. Cuban leader Raul Castro has said he might attend Mass during the papal visit, which would be unprecedented given the decades of atheist policy on the island.
    Castro met with Francis in May, and the two talked for nearly an hour. Castro thanked the Pope for facilitating talks between Cuba and the United States and later said he may rejoin the Catholic Church.
    Paredes met with Francis at the Vatican last week and again during the Pope's visit to Ecuador.
    According to Paredes, Francis hasn't changed, and his new title and role as leader of the Roman Catholic Church hasn't changed their friendship.
    "Pope Francis is truly Jesuit. He is ready to connect with simple ideas, that he always has in his heart and his mind," Paredes said.