At the canonization of Argentina's first female saint, Mama Antula, another Argentine stole the spotlight.
The country's recently elected president, Javier Milei, was present for the event. In the past, he had called Pope Francis an “imbecile.” However, during the election campaign, he had apologized. And at the end of the ceremony, the two exchanged greetings.
Pope Francis and Milei were able to meet again in another moment and the Pope even joked with the President.
You cut your hair!
-I just fixed it. Can I give you a kiss?
Yes, my son, yes. It's good to see you. Thank you for coming.
This was the first meeting between the two since Milei's election and the Argentine president came to Rome following his visit to Israel a few days earlier.
During the canonization of Mama Antula, Pope Francis highlighted her courage. She was a laywoman who collaborated with the Jesuits. She lived during the period when Argentina was still part of the Spanish empire and the Jesuits had been expelled from the area. Mama Antula took over from the Jesuits and dedicated herself to evangelizing throughout the country wearing a characteristic garment that a Jesuit had given her as a gift.
Today, she is a model of apostolic fervor and boldness for us.
Let us pray today to María Antonia, Saint María Antonia de Paz de San José (Mama Antula), that she will help us greatly. May the Lord bless us all.
This canonization was unique compared to others as the ceremony took place in St. Peter's Basilica. It will be one of the last events where Bernini's canopy can be seen without scaffolding. Its restoration is scheduled to begin this month and will be completed in December before the opening of the Jubilee Door.