Pope Francis meets with President of Argentina
(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis on Sunday afternoon met with the President of Argentina, Cristina Fernández de Kirchner.
The two met for over 90 minutes in the Studio of the Paul VI Audience Hall. During the meeting, President Fernández de Kirchner expressed the affection felt for the Pope by the people of Argentina, and asked for the Pope’s blessings on his countrymen.
After his meeting with the President, Pope Francis met with the delegation accompanying the president on her trip to Italy. The president will attend the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) Conference, as well as meet Italian officials, before travelling to the Expo Milan.
The president brought several gifts for the Pope, including a portrait of Blessed Oscar Romero by Argentine artist Eugenio Cuttica; a book by Alberto Methol-Ferré, a favorite author of Francis Pope (“Los Continentales estados y el Mercosur”); an edition of the national poem “Martin Fierro”, which has been cited by Pope Francis; two bas-reliefs for the blind, with their titles written in Braille, which represent the Virgin of Lujan, and a portrait of the Pope; a basket with typical Argentine food and an important volume on the architectural heritage of Argentina published for the nation’s bicentennial.
For his part, Pope Francis gave the president a reproduction of a Russian icon of the eleventh century, depicting the “Virgin of Tenderness”.
The encounter was the fifth meeting between Pope Francis and President Fernández de Kirchner since his election to the Papacy.