We begin in Rome today where the Pope addressed the pilgrims at his weekly General Audience at St.Peter’s square earlier today. Continuing his catechesis on Christian hope, the Pope makes reference to the 1st letter of Peter, where the Apostle encourages us to rejoice in Christ’s resurrection from the dead and to sanctify him in our hearts.
Also during his general audience today, the Pope appealed to the consciences of local and international leaders to bring an end to the Syrian tragedy. “It is with horror”, he said, “that we witness the events that have taken place in Syria. I firmly deplore the unacceptable carnage that took place yesterday in Idlib province, where scores of helpless people, including many children, were killed”. 72 people, including 20 children were killed yesterday, in a chemical gas attack that also injured dozens of other civilians. While the Pope said he is praying for the victims and their families, he issued an urgent appeal to “the consciences of those who have political responsibilities, to halt this tragedy and bring relief to the population that has been sorely tried by war, for far too long”. Pope Francis also encouraged those who are continuing in their efforts to bring help to the inhabitants of the region.
Now before the general audience, the Pope received a delegation of Muslim leaders from Great Britain. And I'll bring you the full story tomorrow.
Every month, the Pope issues a prayer intention video where he invites all of us, to join him in prayer for a specific intention. This April, he asks that we pray for the young People: That young people may respond generously to their vocations, and seriously consider offering themselves to God in the priesthood or consecrated life.
The last story for today. The Pope received a special royal visit at the Vatican. Yesterday, Britain's Prince Charles and his wife, the duchess of Cornwall, met with the Pope as part of the Royal couple’s tour of Italy.
The Vatican did not issue a statement about the topics covered during their conversation but it’s reported that they spoke privately for 27 minutes. Following their private meeting, Prince Charles introduced the 15 members of a delegation accompanying him and gifts were exchanged. Before meeting the pope, the royal couple were given a private tour of the Vatican Secret Archives, where they were shown rare documents relating to the once-complicated history between the Catholic Church and Britain. Among the documents they saw was the last letter written by Mary, Queen of Scots before her execution in 1587. They were also shown a letter written in 1555 by Queen Mary I and King Philip II regarding the restoration of the Catholic Church in England.
And that is all that we have time for today. Join us again tomorrow when we bring you more of the latest news and stories through the Perspectives of a catholic lens. From all of us here at Salt and Light, thank you for joining us and we see you again tomorrow.
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