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Rome Reports

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Remembering four years since Pope Francis' first symbolic trip

The passing of the years does nothing more than confirm that Pope Francis' first trip was not a sporadic act, but the beginning of the whole program of his pontificate against the "culture of indifference." It all began on July 8, 2013, when he left the Vatican at 7:20 in the morning. In Lampedusa, he was received by the archbishop of Agrigento, Francesco Montenegro, whom Pope Francis appointed cardinal almost two years later. Also present was the mayor, who over the years has never ceased to thank the Argentine pontiff for his closeness. GIUSI NICOLINI Mayor of Lampedusa (Italy) "We feel the pope close to us. Ever since his visit to Lampedusa, he remembers those who've died. He highlights the aid we provide and he gives us a few words of encouragement. We feel very close to him." In Lampedusa, he got on a boat and paid homage to the refugees swallowed up by the sea. Then he listened to stories from those who survived the risky venture to Europe. However, the most striking were his words from the homily. It was here he began his campaign to awaken the anesthetized minds of Western countries and help them look at the reality before them without filters. POPE FRANCIS "We look at the half-dead brother lying in the street and maybe we think 'this poor person,' and we continue on our way. This is not our problem... ;we justify our actions. 'But which of you have wept for these people who went by boat?'" ; Throughout these years, the pope has visited the places where he can personally touch suffering with his hands like, Central African Republic, Lesbos, hospitals and nursing homes, centers for drug addicts and many more. These images show that Pope Francis does not seem to cease reminding others who are able to help that there is another sin: omission. JRB/MB RR -V -BN Up:JC