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Rome Reports

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Pope shows gratitude for liberation of an Italian missionary on World Mission Day

On World Mission Day, the pope said that missionaries are the "weavers" of fraternity. He asked for prayers for those who live in places of persecution or who risk their lives. That is why he recalled the recent release of an Italian missionary.

I thank God for the long-awaited liberation of Fr. Pier Luigi Maccalli. May we greet him with this applause! He was kidnapped two years ago in Niger.

Pope Francis also remembered the 18 Italian fishermen who have been taken hostage in Libya. He asked prayers for them and for the improvement of the current situation in Libya.

Brothers and sisters, the time has come to stop every form of hostility, promoting the dialogue that leads to peace, stability, and the unity of the country. Let us pray together for the fishermen and for Libya, in silence.

The pope also greeted all the pilgrims present in the square but paused to greet one particular community.

In particular, I greet and bless the Peruvian community of Rome with affection, gathered here with the venerated image of the Señor de los Milagros. A round of applause for the Peruvian community!

During the Angelus, the pope commented on the Gospel of the day, in which Jesus asks to give to Caesar what belongs to Caesar, and give to God what belongs to God. He said that it's an example that reminds us that everyone must be a good citizen.

Javier Romero
Translation: Christian Campo