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Inside the VaticanApril 07, 2022
Pope Francis is accompanied by Archbishop Charles Scicluna of Malta as he greets the crowd before celebrating Mass at the Granaries in Floriana, Malta, April 3, 2022. (CNS photo/Paul Haring)

Last week, Pope Francis apologized to representatives of the First Nations, Métis and Inuit people for the Catholic Church’s role in Canada’s residential schools that suppressed Indigenous culture and were often the site of abuse. This week on “Inside the Vatican,” host Colleen Dulle and Vatican correspondent Gerard O’Connell discuss what the apology meant to Indigenous leaders.

Pope Francis also told the Indigenous delegations that he hopes to visit Canada this summer, in addition to his already-announced trips to the Democratic Republic of the Congo and South Sudan in July, and possible trips to Ukraine and Lebanon before that. But this past weekend, the pope struggled to move around during his trip to Malta April 2-3.

On the podcast, Gerry recounts the difficulty Pope Francis has had with his knee in Malta and the questions it raises about the impending Holy Week ceremonies and future papal trips. “Obviously they will have to tailor-make the events for him just as they did for the last years of John Paul II,” Gerry said. “They devised ways of reducing the stress and making mobility more easy.”

Colleen and Gerry also discuss Pope Francis’ revelation that he closely follows the news Elisabetta Piqué—Gerry’s wife and an Argentine war correspondent—has been reporting from Ukraine, calling her a few times a week for updates. “We never said anything publicly. It was he who spilled the beans!” Gerry says. “I think it really shows the pope doesn't just work by ordinary, official channels to get his information. He doesn’t [just] depend on the Curia or on ambassadors or governments or nuncios. He also goes out to ordinary people whose judgment he trusts and whom he knows are in touch with the reality.”

Links from the show:

Pope Francis visits Malta this weekend. Here’s what to expect.

Arriving in Malta, Pope Francis warns of a new Cold War and urges attention to refugees

Read Pope Francis’ address to Maltese authorities, civil society and diplomatic corps

Pope Francis last spoke to Putin before New Year’s, is willing to visit Kyiv but that is ‘up in the air’

Pope Francis is wise to not call out Putin directly. Here’s why.

Pope Francis to visit Lebanon in June during economic crisis, country’s president says

Pope Francis: The blood of innocent victims massacred in Bucha ‘cries out to heaven’

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