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     Home > Church >  2014-03-14 18:38:28
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Pope Francis is back at the Vatican, after his weeklong lenten retreat

Pope Francis returned to the Vatican on Friday, after the conclusion of his Lenten spiritual exercises with the Roman Curia earlier on Friday morning. The exercises were preached by Roman pastor, Msgr. Angelo De Donatis. They were held at the Casa Divin Maestro in Ariccia, outside Rome. At the conclusion of the exercises, the Pope expressed his gratitude to Msgr. De Donatis for his help, accompaniment and listening.
“We now return home with a good seed: the seed of the Word of God,” he said. “The Lord will send rain and that seed will grow. It will grow and it will bear fruit. We thank the Lord for the seed and for the rain that he will send us, but we also want to thank the sower because you were the sower and you know how to do it.”
The holy father also asked Mons. De Donatis to continue praying for what he called the 'syndicate of believers', as he referred to his team of the Roman Curia who had been with him for the weeklong retreat. “We are all sinners, he said, “but we all have the will to follow Jesus more closely, without losing hope in the promise and also without losing our sense of humour.”
In a departure from the practice of his predecessors, Pope Francis and all members of the Roman Curia gathered at a retreat house run by the Pauline Fathers outside the Vatican in little town called Arricia, south of Rome. The moving away from the Vatican to an excluded retreat house is seen by analysts as a practice rooted in the spirituality of St. Ignatius Loyola, the founder of the Society of Jesus, which requires of a retreatant “to go away, and to let everything quiet down.”
During this period of the reatreat activities at the Vatican that had to do with the holy Father had to be suspended, including the Wednesday Midweek General audience.


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