Telam says the new pope has just one lung, but a Vatican spokesman said he was unable to confirm whether that report was true.
As a Jesuit, Francis is a member of the Society of Jesus, one of the biggest and most important orders in the church. Jesuits are recognized for their exceptional educational institutions and focus on social justice.
"The new Pope Francis is supposedly a reformer of sorts. He reformed the Jesuits, fighting against liberation theology when that was on the rise in Argentina," said Raymond Arroyo, a CNN contributor and Catholic television host.
About 480 million of the world's 1.2 billion Catholics live in Latin America, but no one from the region had ever been chosen as pope. By electing who they did, the cardinals sent a strong message about where the future of the church may lie.
Francis takes the helm of a Catholic Church that has been rocked in recent years by sex abuse by priests and claims of corruption and infighting among the church hierarchy.
"From the people I've spoken to here in the Vatican who know him well, they say he is, pardon the French here, the butt kicker that's needed," Arroyo said.