Canadian Cardinal Marc Ouellet's family members say they did not anticipate the amount of media attention that came along with his candidacy for the role of pope.

Louis Ouellet, the cardinal's brother, said his family had been anticipating the naming of a new pope since Feb. 28, when Benedict XVI resigned from his position.

"We lived a ton of emotions since February," he said. "My mother is excited to speak with Marc."

He said the family hopes things will remain calm for the next few years and do not anticipate Marc Ouellet to be at the centre of media attention.

"It was a historical moment for the family, and a magical moment for the family," said the cardinal's other brother, Rock Ouellet. "We were also relieved that the [heavy media attention] during the conclave would be slowing down."

René Martineau, the mayor of the town of La Motte where Ouellet hails from, said the intense media attention was a big change for the town of 450 people.

"I am proud, disappointed and relieved," he said.

Martineau said the town would welcome Ouellet back to La Motte if he returns.

Ouellet was seen as one of the leading contenders to succeed Benedict XVI as pope.

A two-day conclave determined Jorge Mario Bergoglio from Argentina would lead the Roman Catholic Church under the name Pope Francis.

Archdiocese of Montreal Thomas Dowd said he was impressed by the Pope's first gestures to the public.

"That moment of silence where he bowed in front of the public and asked them to pray for him. What an amazing pastoral gesture, a sign that he doesn't find himself above the people but truly in partnership with them in a union of prayer," said Dowd.

He said the cardinals made an interesting decision in picking a candidate from Argentina and breaking away from the long line of European popes.