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Apostolic Trip of the Holy Father Francis to Chile and Peru (15-22 January 2018) - The Pope's words on the flight from Rome to Santiago, 16.01.2018

Yesterday, on the aircraft that carried him to Chile for his 22nd Apostolic Trip, the Holy Father Francis, as usual, greeted the media workers accompanying him on the papal flight.

Introduced by a presentation from the Director of the Holy See Press Office, Greg Burke, the Pope addressed the following greeting to the journalists:


Words of the Holy Father

Greg Burke:

Thanks, Holiness.  Thanks first for this morning’s thought: we have all received the card [with the picture of the boy] from Nagasaki.  Thank you especially for the chance to travel with you.  We are a full 70 persons, including, I believe, 12 from Chile and Peru, so twelve new faces.  I take the opportunity to let them know that this is a greeting; there are not 70 questions when we take our turns.  That’s all.  Maybe you want to say something.

Pope Francis:

Good day!

Have a good trip.  They told me from Alitalia that the Rome-Santiago flight is their longest direct flight: fifteen hours and forty… or twenty, minutes… I don’t know.  We’ll have time to rest, work, lots of things.  Thanks for you work which will be demanding: three days in one country, three in the other…  For me it will not be so difficult in Chile because I studied there for a year, I have many friends and I know well – that is to say… I know more…  In Peru I know less, because I went there two or three times for congresses, meetings….

Then, Greg spoke about what I gave you [the card]: I found this by chance.  It was taken in 1945; on the back is the information.  It is a boy carrying his dead brother, standing in line before the crematorium in Nagasaki, after the bombing.  I was moved when I saw this [picture], and I dared write only “the fruits of war”.  And I thought of reprinting it and giving it, because a picture like this says more than a thousand words.  So I wanted to share it with you.

And thanks for your work!

Greg Burke: