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Rome Reports

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Pope Francis meets with German Chancellor Angela Merkel

Pope Francis met with German Chancellor Angela Merkel for the second time. They discussed a wide range of topics during their forty minute meeting. The two exchanged views on environmental conservation, women's rights, fighting poverty, and an upcoming international summit to be held in Germany later this year. Ukraine, however, was at the center of their talk. The German chancellor speaks Russian fluently and has played a major role in mediating the relationship between Russia and Europe. The Pope strongly encouraged Merkel to help find a peaceful solution to the conflict in Ukraine.   Merkel received from the Pope a medallion of St. Martin. It depicts the saint removing his cloak so he can give it to the poor. "I like to give this to the heads of state, because it reminds them it is their duty to protect the poor in society.â? "We try to do our best.â? Merkel gave a donation to help refugee children in the Middle East. She also gifted the Pope a CD collection of Johann Sebastian Bach's music. Vatican Secretary of State, Cardinal Pietro Parolin met with Merkel after her audience with Pope Francis. They were joined by Vatican Secretary for Relations with States, Archbishop Richard Gallagher.  ATO CTV SV -BN Up:AC