Vatican spokesman Fr. Federico Lombardi confirmed that the Pope Francis met with Kim Davis and her husband as part of a large group that was invited, not as a specific meeting of support of her actions.
In an Oct. 2 statement, Fr. Lombardi said that Pope Francis met with Davis alongside several dozen others who had been invited to greet him as he prepared to leave Washington for New York City. The Pope’s meeting with Kim Davis was not what everyone thinks it was. Vatican spokesman the Rev. Federico Lombardi said the audience, which included several dozen other people, didn’t amount to an endorsement.
‘The Pope did not enter into the details of the situation of Mrs. Davis, and his meeting with her should not be considered a form of support of her position in all of its particular and complex aspects.’
Pope Francis strongly defended religious freedom in speeches at the White House, Congress and Philadelphia’s Independence Mall, but he avoided taking public stances or calling people out.
The statement said:
The brief meeting between Mrs. Kim Davis and Pope Francis at the Apostolic Nunciature in Washington, DC has continued to provoke comments and discussion. In order to contribute to an objective understanding of what transpired I am able to clarify the following points:
Pope Francis met with several dozen persons who had been invited by the Nunciature to greet him as he prepared to leave Washington for New York City. Such brief greetings occur on all papal visits and are due to the Pope’s characteristic kindness and availability. The only real audience granted by the Pope at the Nunciature was with one of his former students and his family.
The Pope did not enter into the details of the situation of Mrs. Davis and his meeting with her should not be considered a form of support of her position in all of its particular and complex aspects.”
Pope Francis came to visit America as a pastor. Roman Catholic see the pope as a shepherd who guides them on the road to salvation. Despite Pope Francis’ enormous popularity and the authority of his position, he went to great lengths to emphasize that he stood before the U.S. bishops as a first among equals, instead of a top-down authoritarian.
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