Pope Francis touches a picture of John Paul II Pope Francis touches a picture of John Paul II  (Vatican Media)

Pope thanks The Papal Foundation for supporting Church’s mission

Pope Francis meets with a delegation of The Papal Foundation, and expresses his gratitude for its extensive charitable contributions to the Church’s work around the world.

By Devin Watkins

A 100-member-strong delegation of The Papal Foundation is on pilgrimage to Rome this week, meeting with Pope Francis on Thursday.

The Pope welcomed the Foundation’s members, trustees, and stewards to the Vatican, and thanked them for their “generous support provided both to me and to the Church in so many areas of the world.”

“As we celebrate the Lord’s victory over sin and death and His gift of new life in this holy season of Easter, it is my hope that the joy of the resurrection will always fill your hearts, and that your visit to the tombs of the apostles and martyrs will enhance your fidelity to the Lord and His Church.”

Supporting integral development

Pope Francis pointed out that The Papal Foundation has offered extensive financial support to promoting the “integral development of so many of our brothers and sisters.”

He especially appreciated the group’s support of “educational, charitable, and ecclesial projects,” which help facilitate “the Church’s ongoing efforts to build a culture of solidarity and peace.”

“Your charitable outreach continues to extend to those on the peripheries of society who live in material, and frequently spiritual, poverty.”

Pope Francis address the delegation
Pope Francis address the delegation

Spreading love, hope, mercy

The global situation of conflict, added the Pope, invites them to offer care and humanitarian aid to the victims and refugees of war, especially those forced to flee their homeland in search of safety.

“Your work,” he said, “helps to bring the love, hope, and mercy that the Gospel proclaims to all who benefit from your generosity and commitment.”

Pope Francis again expressed his gratitude to the Foundation for their generosity and commitment, and prayed that members might be renewed in their zeal for serving the Lord in those who suffer.

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Solidarity with the Pope

Finally, the Pope noted that The Papal Foundation has always been animated by solidarity with the Successor of Peter.

So, Pope Francis urged them to pray for him and his ministry, as well as for the needs of the universal Church.

“Entrusting all of you, together with your families, to the loving intercession of Mary, Mother of the Church, I cordially impart my Apostolic Blessing as a pledge of joy and peace in Christ our Risen Saviour.”

Work of The Papal Foundation

According to its website, The Papal Foundation has helped finance the construction of 358 churches and chapels, 170 seminaries, 404 rectories and convents, 273 schools, and 104 hospitals.

Founded in the United States in 1988, the Foundation has provided over $200 million in grants and scholarships to more than 2,000 projects in coordination with the Bishop of Rome.

Pope Francis shakes hands with Cardinal O'Malley, Chairman of the Foundation's Board
Pope Francis shakes hands with Cardinal O'Malley, Chairman of the Foundation's Board
28 April 2022, 11:41