Peru welcomes Pope Francis
Pope Francis arrived in Peru on Thursday evening kicking off the second leg of his 22nd apostolic visit abroad. For a series of reasons the people of Peru are awaiting his words and presence with high expectation and his visit promises to be dense with activity and inspiration as he is scheduled, amongst other things, to address political leaders, celebrate Holy Mass, meet with priests and religious and pay tribute to the nation’s beloved Vergin of La Puerta.
One highlight of Francis' visit will most certainly be his meeting on Friday with the indigenous peoples of Peru’s Amazon rainforest during which he is expected to issue a message of warning and of hope to the world.
The Pope will be in Peru from 18 to 21. This is the third papal journey to the nation after Saint Pope John Paul II who visited the nation twice, in 1985 and 1988.
The Amazon climate of Puerto Maldonado has impacted the usual protocol a papal visit is tied to with the official courtesy visit to Peru’s President taking place late Friday afternoon to allow him to travel to Puerto Maldonado in the morning thus avoiding tropical afternoon downpours.
Pope arrives in Chile
Pope Francis has arrived in Chile, beginning a week-long Apostolic journey that will take him to 6 cities in as many days in Chile and Peru. This his 6th apostolic visit to Latin America.
The Pope was met at Santiago International airport by Chilean President, Michelle Bachelet, and the President of the country’s Bishops’ Conference. There were no official discourses as the Pope went immediately to the Apostolic Nunciature to rest. The official programme of the visit begins today with his meeting with civil authorities and members of the diplomatic corps.
Highlights of the trip are expected to include some less formal meetings with indigenous people and migrants in both countries, as well as traditional encounters with young people, members of the local Bishops Conferences, and his customary conversations with priests and religious.
But there will also be a more personal visit to the Jesuit Community at the St Alberto Hurtado Shrine on Tuesday evening, in keeping with the Pope’s tradition of taking time off to catch up with his Jesuit brothers in the country he is visiting. Hurtado was a Chilean Jesuit who became the country’s first male saint when he was canonized by Benedict XVI.
Two particularly moving encounters are likely to be those at the women’s prison in Santiago, soon after Pope Francis arrives in Chile, and his stop in the northern port city of Iquique, just before he leaves. The city is a refuge for thousands of economic migrants who come to Chile from neighboring countries in search of a better life. Wednesday will see him in the city of Temuco, traditionally considered the poorest area in the entire country and home to an indigenous community that accounts for 23 percent of the population.
‘The Other Francis’: Cardinals, Leaders of the Church, Pope’s Relatives & Friends Share Unfiltered Accounts of Their Francis
The ambitious objective, stated already on the book’s cover, is to offer the reader a portrait of the “Other Francis,” namely, to tell all that has never been said about Pope Francis. Not an easy task, given the impressive amount of volumes dedicated to Francis, which already crowd the shelves of bookstores.
The author is the American journalist – but transplanted to Rome – Deborah Castellano Lubov, Vaticanista of Zenit. “The Other Francis,” (‘L’Altro Francesco’) (published in Italian, but which soon will be translated into English) contains a preface by the Vatican Secretary of State, Cardinal Pietro Parolin, and 14 interviews with personalities of the Roman Curia (and of the Church), spread throughout the five continents, and relatives and friends of the Argentine Pontiff.
However, not lacking in these 200 pages is interesting original news, information, revelations, and sometimes even courageous opinions about the Argentine Pope and various timely questions raised by him. Jorge Mario Bergoglio is a simple and friendly man, who likes to joke a lot, but who is also the Pope who has been able to focus the attention of all humanity on the topics most dear to him: human dignity, unbridled globalization, the distribution of wealth, the safeguarding of Creation.