For the first time in recent memory, it was a fairly quiet day in the Vatican. In addition to his morning Mass with guests, Pope Francis had a meeting with members of the Radio Maria family – see his remarks below – and received in audience the president of Lithuania, Ms. Dalia Grybauskaite. In other papal news, the Vatican published the agenda for the Holy Father’s one-day trip on November 10 to Prato and Florence for the Fifth National Congress of the Italian Church. More about that as we near the date.


The Holy Father Thursday had an audience with members of the “Worldwide Family of Radio Maria” who are in Rome for their Sixth World Congress to reflect on the theme, “On the Roads of the World with Mary.”

Francis highlighted Radio Maria’s objective of “assisting the Church in the work of evangelization,” by “being close to the concerns and dramas of the people with words of comfort and hope, the fruit of faith and of a commitment to solidarity.” Noting that Radio Maria is in 70 countries on five continents, the Pope said this is “good news for everyone” because when there is “the courage to propose high-profile content starting from a clear Christian perspective,” it will surely be well-received, even by those hearing the Gospel for the first time.

Pope Francis exhorted Radio Maria “to persevere in its commitment, a true mission, with fidelity to the Gospel and to the Magisterium of the Church,” and to continue “to listen to society and to people, especially the poorest and the most marginalized.” Do this, he said, in the ‘interior garden’ of prayer, listening to the Word of God” and “doing those very things you propose to your listeners.”

Never forget, said Pope Francis told Radio Maria staff, “the great and unique” gift you offer to those they serve: the gift of Christian hope.”