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Freedom for abductees in Syria

· The Pope’s appeal on the second anniversary of the abduction of Jesuit Paolo Dall’Oglio ·

After reciting the Angelus on Sunday, 26 July, Pope Francis called on local and international authorities to renew their commitment to obtain the freedom of abductees in Syria. 

As the second anniversary of the abduction of the Jesuit Paolo Dall’Oglio approaches, the Pope made “an earnest and urgent appeal for the release of this esteemed religious man”, also remembering “the Orthodox Bishops also abducted in Syria and all the other people who have been seized in the areas of conflict”. As a sign of “affection and joining in their suffering”, he asked the numerous faithful present in St Peter’s Square to join him in praying the Hail Mary.

Sunday’s Angelus was particularly memorable for the Holy Father’s unprecedented act: by clicking on a tablet, he officially opened registration for World Youth Day in Poland, scheduled to take place exactly one year from now. Two young people appeared beside him at the window of the Apostolic Palace, as Pope Francis invited the world’s young people “to experience this pilgrimage either by going to Krakow, or by taking part in this moment of grace in their own communities”. He noted that the event, “being celebrated during the Year of Mercy” would be akin to “a jubilee of youth”.

As Sunday was the day of the liturgical feast of Saints Joachim and Anne, the Pontiff also acknowledged “all grandmothers and grandfathers, thanking them for their valuable presence in families and for the new generations”. Before the Marian prayer, the Pope spoke about Sunday’s Readings, which focused on the event of the multiplication of loaves and fish.




St. Peter’s Square

Feb. 17, 2020