President Obama met Pope Francis at the Vatican on Thursday for about 50 minutes — longer than many had expected.
First after the 50 minutes, Obama brought in the rest of the U.S. delegation, including Secretary of State John Kerry, National Security Advisor Susan Rice and press secretary Jay Carney. One by one, the 10 members of the delegation were introduced to the pope.
President Obama made the slow, formal procession to greet the pope in the ornate Small Throne Room outside the Papal Library.
“Wonderful meeting you. I’m a great admirer,” the president said.
The two walked into the library and took seats at opposite sides of the pope’s desk.
“I bring greetings from my family,” Obama added. “The last time I came here to meet your predecessor I was able to bring my wife and children.”
“If you have a chance to come to the White House, we can show you our garden as well,” the president said.
The inscription on the chest read: “Presented to His Holiness Pope Francis by Barack Obama President of the United States of America, March 27, 2014.”
Earlier this month, Pope Francis was invited by House Speaker John Boehner to address a joint session of Congress. Boehner extended the formal invitation on Mar. 13 in a letter to the Vatican on the one-year anniversary of Francis’ papacy saying the Holy Father has “awakened hearts on every continent.”
The United States’ first African American president and the first Latin American pope both exploded onto the global stage sharing messages of hope and change.
President Obama’s stop in Rome came amid a week-long trip to Europe and the Middle East.
Before Obama left the Vatican, he and the Pope shook hands and embraced.
“My family has to be with me on this journey. They’ve been very strong,” Obama said. “Pray for them. I would appreciate it.”
Source: Multiple media
50 closed minutes with “His Holiness” is a long time, even for Obama. What did they talk about?
My best guess, the Popes upcoming trip to Jerusalem. I am sure that Obama wants to join him. But only if Benjamin Netanyahu is willing to host both of them, and sign a “historical peace agreement”.
Lets wait and watch.
Written by Ivar