Pope Francis at the CEI, joke about health: “It’s not time for funeral honors”

The Holy Father, in conversation for two hours with the Italian Bishops, played down his health conditions

Two hours in conversation with the Italian Bishops for Pope francesco today, opening theGeneral Assembly of the CEI. Bergoglio, as some participants reported to Adnkronos, addressed the issues that are closest to his heart: the search for peace, in Ukraine and in the rest of the world; the tragedy of migrants and reception, the environmental question and the care of the common home with an implicit reference to the flood in Emilia Romagna. The Pope, at the outset, he also mentioned his healthto knee pain that prevents him from moving and he played down with a joke that made those present smile: “I’m fine. It’s not time for the funeral honors yet“.

A “very colloquial” meeting, as defined by those present, during which several prelates asked questions on the issue of migrants in terms of reception, protection, promotion and integration. The crisis of vocations and the theme of the reorganization of seminaries were also addressed with the Pope. A question also on the environmental issue with reference to the social encyclical Laudato si’. Bergoglio reiterated his esteem for the Italian episcopate.

The Pope, who will close the Bishops’ Assembly on Thursday, gave the Bishops a book, ‘Fratellino’, which tells the story of a tormented emigration to the lands of Libya. Tomorrow, the introduction of the president of the CEI, cardinal Matteo Zuppi, to whom the Pope has entrusted the peace mission in Ukraine.