The Pope met with a delegation of the White Fathers. They are in Rome holding their general chapter and are praying that Pope Francis’ health will improve so he can travel to Africa.
Holy Father, it is with great joy that we welcome the news of your visit to the Democratic Republic of Congo and South Sudan, where many of our brothers are. We continue to pray that this visit will take place in the very near future.
After announcing that the trip would be postponed, Pope Francis apologized to the Fathers.
Unfortunately and regretfully, I have had to postpone my trip to the Congo and South Sudan. Indeed, at my age it is not so easy to go on mission. But your prayers and your example give me courage and I am confident that I can visit these people that I hold in my heart.
The Pope announced that on July 3, the day he had planned to celebrate Mass in the Democratic Republic of Congo, he will celebrate a Mass in Rome for the Congolese community.
The day when I was supposed to celebrate Mass in Kinshasha, we will bring Kinshasha to St. Peter’s and there, we will celebrate with all the Roman Congolese people.
The Missionaries of Africa, better known as the White Fathers, were founded in 1868. In addition to the three vows of poverty, chastity and obedience, they add a fourth vow—one of evangelizing Africa.