A little evidence of those emotions were seen as Donald Trump descended in the Vatican City for his first face-to-face meeting with the Argentinian pontiff.
Greeting the US president in the papal library, Francis did not exude his usual warmth and cheerfulness even as Trump proclaimed that it was a “great honor” to meet him.
SOME TENSIONS TO DEVELOP.
The tension grew as the two disagree on the issues that lie closest to Francis’s heart. From climate change to the need to integrate and accept migrants of all faiths. The two had a 29-minute chat with only the interpreter present.
THE INSIDER’S WORDS.
“There was no evidence of the great chemistry he had with Obama. There was something special there with him,” said pope’s biographer. “I think it was a solemn occasion that called for formality and protocol and both demonstrated that they looked much more relaxed at the end,” he added.
THE DISCUSSION WITH POPE.
They discussed world affairs, including interfaith dialogue and peace in the Middle East, with emphasis on the protection of Christians. It was about terrorist threats and the radicalization of young people.
DONALD ACCOMPANIED BY FAMILY.
First Lady Melania, daughter Ivanka and her husband, Jared accompanied the President of United States of America.
Trump arrived in Vatican City at about 8.30am after spending the night at the residence of the United States ambassador to Italy.
THE EXCHANGE MECHANISM.
The two exchanged gifts. Trump offered Pope a large box that he said was filled with books written by Martin Luther King. “This is a gift for you,” Trump was overheard saying. “I think you will enjoy them. I hope you do”. Francis gave Trump a large medallion that depicted an olive branch, a symbol of peace. The president replied: “We can use peace”. Trump was offered some of Pope’s latest writings. They were known as encyclicals, including his work on the need to protect the environment. “Well, I will be reading them,” Trump said.
SPEAKING WITH THE OTHER MEMBERS.
The president spoke to Pietro Parolin, the Vatican’s secretary of state, for nearly an hour. The two had a “good exchange on climate change”.
A tour was held in Sistine Chapel for President and the First lady. Melania visited a children’s hospital in Rome. Ivanka toured Sant’Egidio charity center.
THE RETURNING BACK.
Trump, who flied to Brussels on Wednesday for a NATO summit, wrapped up his tour on Friday at the G7 summit in Sicily.