Pope Francis put another mark on his papacy for about nine years – appearing as a guest on a television talk show.
The pope spoke of personal friendship as well as political issues during an interview with Fabio Fazio, presenter of the popular Italian talk show “Che Tempo Che Fa”.
The one-hour episode was shown on Rai, Italy’s public television channel, on February 6.
Fazio interviewed the pope at a distance, announcing from the studio of the Milan period, with Francis remaining at the Vatican.
Francis has conducted interviews with Italian and foreign media since his election in March 2013.
But it was the first time he had answered questions in a chat session that is regularly viewed by millions of viewers.
Here is the video ; https://youtu.be/MS2Nj87b69I
Topics ranged from migration to music
In the interview, Francis reiterated his insistence that immigrants be welcomed and integrated into the community.
Francis spoke of the constant fighting against humanitarian ships rescuing migrants in the Mediterranean Sea from unsuitable shipping vessels, but the denial of port permits for days and countries bordering the sea.
“Every country has to say how many immigrants it can receive,” he said, calling for greater solidarity between nations for those who hope for a better life somewhere in Europe. “It’s an internal political problem.”
Fazio cited tensions in Europe over whether Russia could invade Ukraine e.
Francis did not measure directly, he simply replied “war is always destructive”.
There were also light moments in the conversation. When asked about his recent visit to a record store in Rome, Francis said he enjoys contemporary music, as well as cucumber numbers, like many fellow Argentines from Buenos Aires.
“Someone who doesn’t play cucumber doesn’t come from Buenos Aires,” Francis joked.
He recalled that as a boy, he had dreamed of becoming a butcher because his family butcher wore a belt with money in his pocket.
When asked if he feels lonely or has friends, Francis replied that he needed friends and had them – they were “few but true”.
Francis often concludes his public speech by saying “Don’t forget to pray for me”.
At the end of the interview, he asked the non-petitioners, “at least use some good ideas, I need the closeness of the people”.