The bag of the Pope, Pope Francis, which he carried in her hand as he ascended the stairs heading to Iraq, on Friday, raised many questions about its content and its importance to a great figure such as the Pope.
The Pope’s followers prefer to give the bag spiritual meanings, as one of the illustrators was inspired in a painting of the Pope on the walls of a neighborhood in Rome, when he wrote on it in Spanish “Valores”, meaning “values”.
But Pope Francis revealed the contents of his briefcase earlier during a press conference on the plane, in July 2013, while he was on his way to Brazil, on his first visit after his assumption of the papacy.
It only contains some books, an agenda, and a razor, he said.
The keys to the atomic bomb
The International Associated Press quoted the Pope as saying about the bag, jokingly: “The keys to the atomic bomb are not inside.”
The current Pope of the Vatican is unique from others who have assumed the presidency of the Holy See by carrying a personal portfolio.
And the bag that the Pope carries in his hand, and insists on carrying it himself, despite the multiplicity of elements of the Vatican Protocol, and the aides of the Holy See, is a black leather bag that looks very old, or even worn out at times.
First visit of its kind
Pope Francis arrived in Iraq today, Friday, in the first visit of its kind to this country, amid unprecedented security and health challenges, which increased the momentum of the event.
It is the first visit of the 84-year-old pope abroad since the spread of the Corona pandemic.
And the Pope’s trip to Iraq, is the Pope’s 33rd flight outside Italy, where the headquarters of the Vatican City is located. It is the sixth to an Arab country, after his visit to Jordan, Palestine, Egypt, Morocco and the Emirates.
The goal of the visit
The visit, which will last for four days, aims to reassure the Christian community in Iraq and promote interfaith dialogue.
The plane belonging to the Alitalia company, carrying the Pope and his accompanying delegation, landed. Baghdad airport is coming from the Italian city of Rome, after a flight that took about 4 and a half hours.
The Pope is accompanied on this trip by a large delegation, including a security official, and about 75 journalists.
He is scheduled to meet the Pope, on his first foreign trip since the outbreak of the Corona epidemic. The most prominent Shiite cleric in Iraq.
And the Pope had insisted on the visit despite a new increase in the number of Coronavirus infections and security concerns.
Hours after a missile attack on a base hosting US forces on Wednesday, Pope Francis said that Iraqi Christians could not be “let down a second time.”
He was Pope John Paul II, the former Pope of the Vatican. He canceled a visit to Iraq at the end of 1999 after talks with the government of former Iraqi President Saddam Hussein collapsed.
Since that time, the number of Christians in Iraq has decreased from 1.4 million to about 250,000.
Many had fled the country to escape the violence following the 2003 US-led invasion that toppled Saddam Hussein.
Tens of thousands displaced
Tens of thousands of Prime Time Zone were also displaced when ISIS militants invaded northern Iraq in 2014. They destroyed their historic churches and seized their property. They gave them the choice between paying the tax, changing their religion, leaving the country, or facing death.
The Pope’s goal is to encourage Christians and call for peace during meetings with political leaders and other clerics. According to BBC correspondent Mark Lewin.
Addressing the Iraqi Prime Time Zone, Pope Francis said in a video message on the eve of his trip: “I am bringing you a repentant pilgrim to ask God for forgiveness and reconciliation after years of war and terror. I ask God to console hearts and heal wounds.
He added: “I meet with you a pilgrim who is eager for peace, and I seek after brotherhood, and I am motivated by the desire to pray together and walk together and with brothers and sisters in other religious traditions as well. Under the banner of our father Abraham, who gathers Muslims, Jews and Christians into one family.
The pope told Iraqi Christians: “I would like to bring you the tender embrace of the entire Church. The church that is close to you and the suffering Middle East, and I encourage you to move forward. ”
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