Pole Omits Invitation, to Spare Pope More Suffering

VATICAN CITY, OCT. 19, 2003 (Zenit.org).- Poland’s president asked that no further invitations be made for John Paul II to visit his homeland since, given his inability to say yes, it only increases the Pope’s «suffering.»

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Aleksander Kwasniewski made these statements to the press Friday after being received by the Holy Father in a private audience, in the framework of celebrations for the 25th anniversary of his pontificate, which the Polish head of state attended.

The Vatican press office gave no details about the content of their meeting.

During a press meeting, the president, a former Communist, said that the Pope is coping with his illness in «a heroic way» and that his courage is «worthy of great respect.»

In recent weeks, several Polish public personalities have renewed invitations to the Holy Father to visit his country again. Journalists asked Kwasniewski if he had also invited the Pope.

The Polish head of state said he did not think it was opportune since the Pope, being unable to accept the invitation, suffers even more.

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