Pope Francis Sends Papal Emissary to Visit President Joe Biden

pope francis sends papal emissary to visit president joe biden

ROME — Pope Francis has sent Bologna Cardinal Matteo Zuppi to hand-deliver a personal letter to U.S. President Joe Biden appealing for collaboration in the Ukraine peace process.

Cardinal Zuppi’s visit to Washington D.C. took place from Monday to Wednesday of this week, the Vatican reported, and began with a meeting between the Italian prelate and the president of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB), Archbishop Timothy Broglio.

Their conversation, the Vatican Press Office stated, focused on the war in Ukraine and the Holy See’s efforts on behalf of peace and the victims of the conflict.

On Tuesday, the Vatican delegation, which also included the papal nuncio to the United States, Archbishop Christophe Pierre, met with members of the U.S. Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe (Helsinki Commission) to discuss possible ways in which the Holy See’s peace measures could be rendered more effective.

pope francis sends papal emissary to visit president joe biden

Envoy of the Holy Father Francis, Cardinal Matteo Zuppi attends the meeting with Ukrainian Parliament Commissioner for Human Rights Dmytro Lubinets to discuss the exchanges of the POWs and the deportation of Ukrainian children at the Child Rights Protection Center, Kyiv, capital of Ukraine.(Kirill Chubotin / Ukrinform/Future Publishing via Getty Images)

That afternoon, the Papal Envoy and the other members of the Delegation went to the White House, where they were received by President Biden, to whom Cardinal Zuppi delivered a personal letter from the Pope Francis, reportedly underscoring the pontiff’s sorrow over the suffering caused by the war.

The meeting with the president lasted over an hour and transpired in an atmosphere of “great cordiality and mutual listening,” the Vatican declared, and the conversation dwelt on humanitarian efforts on behalf of children and the most fragile people as well as exploring possible paths of peace.

Archbishop Pierre, recently tapped by Pope Francis to become a cardinal at an upcoming papal consistory, told Italian media that the Holy See’s delegation also proposed the possibility of involving Vatican diplomacy in mediation for the exchange of prisoners between Ukraine and Russia.

On Wednesday, the Vatican delegation participated in the Senate Prayer Breakfast at the headquarters of the United States Congress.

Italian media have circulated rumors that the Vatican’s next move in the Ukraine peace process may be a direct appeal to Beijing.

While Pope Francis criticized Moscow Patriarch Kirill as Putin’s “altar boy,” the pope’s critics have suggested that he plays much the same role to Chinese President Xi Jinping, due to his entrenched unwillingness to call out China’s egregious human rights violations against the Uyghur Muslims and members of the underground Catholic Church.

Authored by Thomas D. Williams, Ph.D. via Breitbart July 20th 2023