The Vatican. Pope Francis did not read the homily during the Palm Sunday Mass. The Vatican refuses to answer the questions

At the last minute, Pope Francis skipped the homily during the Palm Sunday Mass. When journalists asked the Vatican to explain this unusual situation, it was told that no reason would be given for the decision to resign from the pulpit. Reuters points out that it is extremely rare for a church leader to skip a sermon during such an important event.

At the mass in St. Peter's Square — which, according to the Vatican gendarmerie, drew 60,000 people — the pope spoke in a weak voice. The Palm Sunday Mass, commemorating Jesus' entry into Jerusalem, began with a procession of olive branches and palm trees in the square in front of the Vatican basilica. Then the fragments of the Gospel were read, and then the mass continued – without the papal sermon.

Reuters recalls that the 87-year-old pope has been suffering from bronchitis and fever in recent weeks and has hired an aide to read his speeches. This time the prepared text of the sermon was never read.

According to commentators, this was the result of the Pope's chronic health problems. And Reuters points out that it is rare for a church leader to skip a sermon during such an important event.

The Vatican refuses to respond

Journalists asked the Vatican to explain this unusual situation. The reply was that the reason for the decision to withdraw from the council would not be disclosed.

During the mass, the television broadcast for several minutes showed only the crowd, rather than a close-up view of the Pope. Later – according to Reuters – an announcer for Vatican Radio said he had decided not to read the pontiff. The Pope, dressed in red robes, continued his presiding post and read parts of the mass.

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Pope's health problems

Because of knee problems, for more than a year, Francis has sat near the altar during Mass, while the cardinals act as the main celebrants.

Also Read: Pope Francis Health Issues “I can't read speech”

Pope has been having problems with his voice for three weeksReuters

Francis on 'infamous terrorist attack'

Addressing the faithful before the final Angelus prayer, the Pope said:- I assure you of my prayers for the victims of the heinous terrorist attack in Moscow yesterday evening. May God welcome them in peace and comfort their families.

– And may he change the hearts of those who organize and carry out these inhuman acts (…) that offend God who commanded: You shall not kill – he added.

Then he called:- Let us pray for all the brothers and sisters affected by the war. I think in particular of the tortured Ukraine, where extreme attacks on infrastructure have left many without electricity, causing death and suffering and carrying the risk of an even greater humanitarian disaster.

– Please, don't forget about the tortured Ukraine. He also appealed to us to think about Gaza, which has been hit hard and many places where war is taking place. The Pope read this text before praying the Angelus in a clearly weak voice.

Finally, he wandered through the areas full of devotees and greeted them for a long time.

Main photo source: PAP/EPA

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