(ZENIT News / Lisbon, 08.02.2023).- On the afternoon of Wednesday, August 2, at around 4:30 PM Lisbon time, the Pope received President of the Assembly of the Republic, Augusto Ernesto dos Santos Silva, and later Portugal’s Prime Minister, António Costa, for a private audience at the Apostolic Nunciature in the Portuguese capital.
At 5:00 PM, after concluding the private audiences and leaving the Apostolic Nunciature (Vatican Embassy in Portugal), Pope Francis headed to the Jerónimos Monastery in Lisbon to pray Vespers with the Bishops, Priests, Deacons, Consecrated Men and Women, Seminarians, and Pastoral Agents.
Upon arrival, the Pope was welcomed at the main entrance by the Patriarch of Lisbon, Cardinal Manuel Clemente, the President of the Portuguese Episcopal Conference and Bishop of Leiria Fátima, Monsignor José Ornelas Carvalho, and the Parish Priest, who presented him with the Cross and holy water for sprinkling. Two children gifted Pope Francis a floral present. Afterwards, the Holy Father crossed the church nave and reached the altar.
After a brief welcome greeting from the President of the Portuguese Episcopal Conference, the Pope presided over the celebration of Vespers, during which he delivered his homily. Finally, Pope Francis left the Jerónimos Monastery and returned by car to the Apostolic Nunciature in Lisbon, where he had a private dinner.