National News

Video: Australians come to Rome to give Pope Francis a gift

Monday 9 January 2017

By Rome Reports

Students and professors from John XXIII Jesuit College in Perth, Australia who are studying Italian came to Rome to give a gift to Pope Francis.  While this was the first audience for many in the group, they say that being a Catholic college, they had to attend a General Audience with him.
Carmelina Galante-Grassi,John XXIII College, says ‘I think he sort of comes from the heart and from the people and the fact that he can speak all those different languages, and he changed the format from all the other popes...It was really nice, really exciting, down to earth and beautiful’.

The gift they presented him at the end of the audience was a photograph of a bronze statue of the patron of their college, St. John XXIII. They wrapped it up and gave it as a gift and a thank you for hosting them.

‘Hopefully he'll like it and just to sort of say, 'Yes, we are Catholics on the other side of the world and we really like Pope Francis.' And our school is named after a saint now, so it's wonderful!’ said Carmelina.

The students were able to practice their Italian while listening to the pope during the Audience and had a message for him in addition to the gift they brought.

‘Viva Francesco, Viva Francesco, Viva Francesco!’
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