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Rome Reports

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The Pope offers an elegant apology to the president of Croatia

When Pope Francis greeted the president of Croatia, Kolinda Grabar-KitaroviÄ?, he first apologized in Spanish.  

"Good morning."

"Good morning, Holy Father. It is an honor."

"I apologize for keeping you waiting..."

"It's nothing."

"I had other audiences that went late and I could not leave."

"It's okay."

It was a very cordial meeting. The president invited Pope Francis to visit the country and asked about the canonization of Cardinal Stepinac.

The Pope said that first he wants to know the opinion of Orthodox Serbs so that wounds are not reopened. Some accuse the cardinal of having been complicit in the persecution of non-Catholics.

The Pope gave her the medallion of St. Martin of Tours, along with a message

"Care for the needy of your country."

The president gave him some books in Croatian and a soccer jersey.