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86 and busy: Pope’s back-to-school schedule is intense as ever

PAPIEŻ FRANCISZEK

Maria Laura Antonelli/AGF/SIPA/SIPA/East News

I.Media - published on 08/26/23

After a busy summer break, we're on to a busy back-to-work schedule.

After a summer break, Pope Francis’ official agenda is filling up again. The 86-year-old Pontiff, who has received numerous individuals and groups since the beginning of the week, also delivered a speech on August 25, to a large delegation of the Sisters Disciples of Jesus the Eucharist, on the centenary of their foundation.

Friday morning, the Pope officially received six people, including the Apostolic Nuncio to France, Archbishop Celestino Migliore, and two groups. The day before, on August 24, he received Cardinal Zuppi, who in addition to being the president of the Italian Bishops’ Conference, is also his special peace-seeking envoy on the Ukraine war. He was also visited by Cardinal Grech, the secretariat of the Synod of Bishops, just over a month before the general assembly next October.

This week, the Pope met a number of personalities to discuss the Russian-Ukrainian conflict, including Hungarian President Katarina Novák and US Chief of Staff General Mark A. Milley, who was granted audience on Monday.

On Wednesday, he presided over the General Audience, where he arrived walking with his cane.

Thus we can say that the Argentine Pope, who was hospitalized last June for abdominal surgery, doesn’t seem to be slowing down as the new school year gets underway.

He is due to visit Mongolia – with a flight lasting more than 10 hours – from August 31 to September 4.

On August 21, while receiving European lawyers, he announced that he was in the process of drafting an update to his encyclical Laudato si’. This came two weeks after his return from World Youth Day, which he attended from August 2 to 6 in Lisbon.

Take to your knees before any action

Receiving the Sisters Disciples of Jesus the Eucharist, a congregation founded in Italy in 1923, he encouraged the nuns to spread “a different war, against poverty, against injustice,” and “a different epidemic, that of love.”

“There are so many people who are considered the throwaways of society,” lamented the head of the Catholic Church, urging the consecrated women to care for the “poorest, (the) most despised and (the) most marginalized.”

In his speech, he also advised them to “get down on our knees” before Christ before taking any action, even if this seems “absurd” in the eyes of the world.

Tags:
Pope Francis
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