- Feb 18, 2020
Sunday, when the Church celebrated the feast of the Immaculate Conception, Argentina saw an event labeled by participants and observers as “historic:” The incumbent president and the president-elect took part in a Mass in the country’s famed shrine of Lujan and shared the sign of the peace with an embrace rarely seen in the country’s politics.
Argentine media outlets are reporting that Francis has taken a homecoming next year off the table – in part, perhaps, because he doesn’t want such a trip to be seen as a victory lap for any political faction.
After being away from my home country of Argentina for the past five years, only going back to visit with the family for Christmas and the odd long weekend, I decided to avoid Rome’s scorching summer this year and head back on a reporting mission to take the country’s temperature regarding my fellow Argentinian, Pope Francis.
“Isn’t this a moment to go towards a ‘Great National Pact’ with a wide and generous view, one which is neither functional nor circumstantial, leaving aside narrow sectarian interests?” asked Cardinal Mario Poli of Buenos Aires on Saturday.