Posted on 30 Nov 2013

Putin Shows His Religious Side with Pope

25 NOVEMBER 2013

Russian president Vladimir Putin has shown off his religious side during a visit to the Vatican, stopping to cross himself and kiss an icon of the Madonna that he gave to Pope Francis.

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Mr Putin and Francis met privately for 35 minutes this evening in the pope’s private library.

The Vatican did not immediately give details about the conversation.

Francis gave Mr Putin a ceramic mosaic of the Vatican gardens, and Mr Putin presented Francis with an image of the icon of the Madonna of Vladimir, an important religious icon for the Russian Orthodox faithful.

After they exchanged the gifts, Mr Putin asked Francis if he liked it, and Francis said he did. Mr Putin then crossed himself and kissed the image, and Francis followed suit.

The Argentinian pope is particularly devoted to Marian icons.

Source: Press Association http://www.independent.ie/world-news/europe/putin-shows-off-religious-side-kisses-icon-on-vatican-visit-29783042.html

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Vatican City, 26 November 2013 (VIS) – Yesterday afternoon Vladimir V. Putin, president of the Russian Federation, was received in audience by the Holy Father Francis. Mr. Putin subsequently went on to meet with the secretary of State, Archbishop Pietro Parolin, who was accompanied by the secretary for Relations with States, Archbishop Dominique Mamberti.

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During the cordial discussions, satisfaction was expressed for the good existing bilateral relations, and the Parties focused on various questions of common interest, especially in relation to the life of the Catholic community in Russia, revealing the fundamental contribution of Christianity to society. In this context, mention was made of the critical situation faced by Christians in some regions of the world, as well as the defence of and promotion of values regarding the dignity of the person, and the protection of human life and the family.

Furthermore, special attention was paid to the pursuit of peace in the Middle East and the grave situation in Syria, with reference to which President Putin expressed thanks for the letter addressed to him by the Holy Father on the occasion of the G20 meeting in St. Petersburg. Emphasis was placed on the urgency of the need to bring an end to the violence and to ensure necessary humanitarian assistance for the population, as well as to promote concrete initiatives for a peaceful solution to the conflict, favouring negotiation and involving the various ethnic and religious groups, recognising their essential role in society.

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