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Pres. Mothers of the Plaza de Mayo: The Pope definitely was not part of the dictatorship

2014-11-07

This Argentinian grandmother and her grandson are still excited about their personal one on one meeting with Pope Francis. 

Estela de Carlotto heads an Argentinian group known as 'Mothers of La Plaza de Mayo.' For decades the group has searched for loved ones who disappeared during the country's dictatorship. She says she had a chance to speak to the Pope about that period in the country, along with  accusations that Jorge Mario Bergoglio was somehow involved. 

ESTELA DE CARLOTTO
President, Mothers of La Plaza de Mayo
"At one point we were talking about a common  friend who passed away and I said, 'we know the same person.' So we were going to start talking more about that, and that period,  but he said. 'That's done with...it doesn't make sense to talk about it anymore.' I think that says a lot. Whoever wants to tarnish the Pope's reputation with this issue, doesn't have any grounds to stand on.” 

But during the meeting they also talked about more relaxed issues. For example, soccer. Ignacio, the grandson of Estela, is big soccer fan, just like the Pope. 

IGNACIO GUIDO MONTOYA CARLOTTO
"I took a chance and I remind him about the four goals my favorite team scored in the recent championship. He laughed saying he didn't mind because his team had won the Copa Libertadores. So we definitely know he likes soccer a lot, like me.”


They were both surprised by the Pope's good sense humor. 

ESTELA DE CARLOTTO
President, Mothers of La Plaza de Mayo
"He's got good sense of humor... When we were taking pictures we told him we wanted all of them. He said, 'Sure, not a problem, but don't use them for any type of voodoo magic.'  Later on, we told him we would pray for him. He responded, 'Yes, please do, but prayers for me, not against me, ok.' I think he felt very comfortable.” 

For Estela, it was a special meeting for many reasons. She got a chance to speak with the Pope with her grandson by her side. That was even more moving, since she recently found him at the age of 36. He was born in captivity during Argentina's dictatorship and his family didn't know about his whereabouts. 

Even though they've been searching for decades, many of these grandmothers have passed away in their search, never finding their relatives. Others though, just like Estela, are still hoping for their miracle. 


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