Pope Francis remembered today from Marseille the “many people who emigrate”, celebrating a mass for 50,000 people with which he closed his two-day visit to the French city in a “football” atmosphere at the local Velodrome stadium, at the which was also attended by French President Emmanuel Macron.
When delivering the homily, Francis highlighted the value of “human life, which today is rejected in so many people who emigrate, as well as in so many unborn children and in so many abandoned elderly people,” in line with his request for more openness to migrants. which marked his four speeches in Marseille.
Received with applause and singing by the nearly 50,000 people who, according to the Vatican, filled the Velodrome, the pontiff spun around in a popemobile while from one of the stands the faithful unfurled a flag several meters high with his face and part of the Marseille skyline. , in a gesture that showed the passion for Francisco.
Then, from the same tribune, the word “Merci” was formed, in gratitude to the Pope for his visit, on what was his 44th trip as pontiff outside of Italy.
In his homily, the Pope said: “Our metropolitan cities and the numerous European countries like France, where different cultures and religions coexist, are in this sense a great challenge against the exasperations of individualism, against the selfishness and closures that produce loneliness and sufferings.”
In one of the stadium’s boxes, and despite criticism from liberal sectors of his country, Macron was one of those attending the mass along with his wife Brigitte, sitting one row behind former IMF director Christine Lagarde.
This morning, the pope and the president met alone for half an hour at the local Faro palace.
Before entering the stadium, the pope walked through the streets of Marseille with 100,000 people who came out to greet him in the Velodrome area, according to authorities.