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Rome Reports

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Pope invited 21 Syrian refugees to eat at his home, Santa Marta

These are some of the pope's most distinguished guests: 21 Syrian refugees, who have been given a second chance in Rome. Pope Francis greeted them all one by one. He also gave each of the children a tender kiss on the top of their head. "Look at him, how handsome!" After he sat down with them at the table in Santa Marta, but made sure to pray a blessing before starting to eat. "May the Lord bless you all, bless your family and bless this food. Let us go forward and let there be peace on Earth. Amen." The guests shared not only lunch with the pope, but they presented their stories. Pope Francis already knew some of them, ;particularly, the three families he brought to Rome with him on the plane after his visit to Lesbos on April 16. The others arrived in Italy in June. They explained to the pope how the first months in their new home have been going. However, the children were the real stars with this collection of drawings they gave to Pope Francis. Most of them depict the suffering they have already lived through at this young age. ; "It is the drama of war." The pope thanked them for their creative gifts by them giving them toys, gifts and more affection. The 21 refugees were brought to Italy by the Community of Sant'Egidio. Therefore, the founder, Andrea Riccardi, members from the Vatican and those who made their arrival possible also attended this lovely meal. AC/MB CTV -JM -BN Up:YA