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Rome Reports

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Pope receives Borussia Mönchengladbach soccer players in the Vatican

Before the General Audience in Paul VI Audience Hall, Pope Francis received players and leaders of the German soccer team Borussia Mönchengladbach in the Vatican. ¡

After Rolf Konigs, the club's president, expressed gratitude on behalf of the entire team, everyone attentively listened to the pope's words. 

"Your visit gives me the opportunity to express my gratitude for the friendly relationship that has been created between your soccer society, particularly your former team and its past glories, and the Vatican Sports Association, in which several matches have been played in Mönchengladbach and Rome in recent years."

He thanked the club for their interests and initiatives in helping the youth and those most in need. 

“I invite you all to continue to commit yourselves to being 'athletes of good and peace,' that the present world so badly needs.”

When bidding farewell, Pope Francis even dared to speak a few words in German. 

Before leaving, the soccer team came bearing many gifts for the pope. They gave him a t-shirt with his name on it, and a basket full of sweets.