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Rome Reports

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Pope to Mexican bishops: The concerns of your parishes are also mine

Mexican bishops continued their "ad liminaâ? visits with Pope Francis, to analyze the state of their dioceses. "As the bishops' conference, we strive to be alongside our people, giving special attention to families, youth and indigenous communities.â? Pope Francis said he was concerned with social and pastoral issues in Mexico. He thanked the bishops for their work. POPE FRANCIS "I learned a lot from what you had told me. Serious concerns from your parishes have stayed with me. Some suffer greatly. The problems that Cardinal Ortega mentioned are serious.â? The Pope handed each of the bishops copies of a message, directed to them all. Shortly after, the Bishops' Conference president, Cardinal Francisco Robles, exposed to the media the contents of the message. In it, Pope Francis asked the bishops not to abandon the victims of violence caused by drug trafficking.  CARD. FRANCISCO ROBLES President, Mexican Episcopal Conference "The people of God wait for you, the shepherds, not for technical or political answers to this serious evil. What people expect is the proximity of their shepherds.â? In his message, the Pope said that it was important for lay people to be involved in the county's social and political spheres, giving witness of their faith, "with consistency and unabashedly.â? Meanwhile, the bishops took advantage of the opportunity to ask the Pope if he'll visit Mexico. CARD. FRANCISCO ROBLES President, Mexican Episcopal Conference "The Pope didn't say yes or no. He more or less explained what visits he has planned for the immediate future. But he said, 'we'll see...'â? The Pope's trip to the Holy Land will delay his meetings with the remaining bishops. They'll restart once he returns to Rome, from May 27-30. JRB/RCA CTV JM -BN Up: KLH