Pope Francis’ First Visit To The U.S.

Chaeann Lawrence, Reporter

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Pope Francis, the leader of the Roman Catholic Church, began his first visit to the United States on Tuesday September 22.  He stayed for the duration 6 days. His first stop before arriving in New York was Washington D.C. His visit, according to CNN news, was to, “Highlight his love for the poor and his willingness to tackle the nations most significant political, social, and economic controversies.” When the Pope arrived he was welcomed at the Joint Base Andrews which is outside Washington D.C by President Barack Obama, the first lady Michelle Obama, their daughters, Vice President Joe Biden, and his family.

The Pope arrived from Cuba on an Italian jet.  In the cockpit of the jet were the American flag and the Vatican flag. The jet pulled closely toward a group of priests in black and red robes, along with a group of children from local Catholic schools. CNN news stated that, “The crowd chanted Ho Ho, Hey, Hey Hey, Welcome to the U.S.A.” The Pope held a canonization mass at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception. On Thursday, the Pope had the first ever joint address to Congress by a pontiff. He then arrived in New York, where he hosted a religious service at the Ground Zero Site of the 9/11 attacks.

Pope Francis also spoke at St. Patrick’s Cathedral on 5th avenue in Manhattan. According to the New York Times, “The newly restored white marble sanctuary began to fill with nearly 2,500 priests, nuns, and lay people, many with stories of how they had come to be there.” Pope Francis did something very kind, he passed on the opportunity to dine with politicians. Instead he ate with and blessed a meal for homeless people at St. Maria’s Meals, which consists of homeless women who have been abused, people with mental illnesses, and new immigrants to the country.

The Pope’s visit according to CNN news, “Is triggering one of the largest security mobilizations in U.S history, jointly run by the U.S Secret Service and the F.B.I, and involving federal, state, and city law enforcement.” The Pope seems to be an inspirational and a down to earth man.  Hopefully, his message of kindness and service will inspire young Americans.

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