On the aircraft carrying him to Mozambique, the Holy Father Francis gave his usual greetings to the media workers accompanying him on the papal flight.
Introduced by the director of the Holy See Press Office, Matteo Bruni, the Pope addressed the following words to the journalists:
Words of the Holy Father
Msgr. Mauricio Rueda:
Good morning to all! I am very happy not to present – because you all know him – the new director of the Press Office, Dr. Matteo Bruni, who has accompanied us on all our apostolic trips, but today let us give him a warm greeting and all our best wishes in this new mission, in this new service to the Church and to the Holy Father. We all know his skills and his generosity, suited to carrying out this valuable service. Thank you.
Thank you, Msgr. Rueda. Thank you to the Holy Father for your trust in this new task and thanks also to you all for the affection of so many years of working together on these aeroplanes and on similar occasions.
Today, Holy Father, we are a working community of a just under 70 journalists, some of whom are from the countries we are going to visit: there are four journalists from Mozambique, one journalist from Madagascar and three from Mauritius. So, good morning to all. I will not go any further, other than to thank you for the words you will say to us, for those you will say to us along with the gestures that will accompany us in these days, and for the pleasure of being your travelling companions. Thank you, Holy Father!
Good morning! Thank you for your company, thank you for your help. Let us hope that this long journey will bear fruit, thank you very much. Today the “dean” [Valentina Alazraki] is not present – it would have been her 153rd trip, I think... But there is the “co-dean” of Reuters, Pulella: he takes the lead... and on we go! Thank you very much. But regarding the dean, I would like to say that the other day her latest book on abused women came out – it is truly a jewel – to help understand the pain and exploitation of women today. We must reflect on this issue. I would like to thank Valentina for this work she has done, so painstakingly, a good book. Then I would like to tell you that there are, I think the 50th, EFE, Spanish... where is Cristina Cabrejas?... Eighty? Ah, she’s younger than me... So I’ll tell Matteo Bruni, in the final meeting, to give her a special place so that she can ask the questions she thinks are appropriate, one or two questions, freely, out of the program. A tribute to the EFE. Thank you. Now I will have the pleasure of greeting you all. Thank you.
Thank you very much, and all the best.
I would like to invite you, each one of you in your heart, to say a prayer for the victims of the hurricanes in the Bahamas: they are poor people who suddenly, from one day to the next, lose their homes, everything, even their lives. Each one of you in your heart should pray for these brothers and sisters who are suffering as a result of these hurricanes in the Bahamas. Thank you.