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Pope Francis

Saying he missed people, pope returns to window for Sunday prayer

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Pope Francis greets the crowd as he leads the “Regina Coeli” from the window of his studio overlooking St. Peter’s Square at the Vatican April 18, 2021. CNS photo/Paul Haring

VATICAN CITY (CNS) — Greeting visitors in St. Peter’s Square after nearly a month of tight restrictions due to the pandemic, Pope Francis said he was happy to see people allowed to gather and be present for Sunday noonday prayer. “I offer a warm greeting to all of you, people of Rome and pilgrims,” he said, pointing out the many flags he could see being held high. A few hundred people, all wearing masks and socially distanced, attended the recitation of the “Regina Coeli” prayer April 18 after nearly a month of tighter controls on gatherings in an ongoing attempt to curb the spread of the coronavirus. “Thanks be to God, we can find ourselves again in this square for the Sunday and holiday appointment,” he said, adding how much he misses greeting people in the square when he must recite the midday prayer inside the apostolic library. “I am happy, thanks be to God! And thank you for your presence,” he said to applause.

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