Pope Francis addresses journalists aboard the plane heading to Sarajevo

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Pope on Papal Flight: We Are Nearing Making Decisions on Medjugorje

Returning From Sarajevo, Responds to Journalists’ Questions

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On his return flight from Sarajevo on Saturday night, Pope Francis spoke to reporters where he discussed Medjugorje, arms dealers, the right way for young people to use technology, and a possible visit to France.

Medjugorje

Returning from his pastoral visit to the Bosnian capital, the Holy Father was asked on the current position of the Church regarding the apparitions of Medjugorje.

“We are about to make decisions and then they will be communicated,” the Pontiff replied.

In 1981, six children first reported visions of the Virgin Mary in the Bosnian town. Since then, it has been a major pilgrimage site. However, some believe the apparitions are a hoax.

The commission of inquiry on Medjugorje, presided over by Cardinal Camillo Ruini, did a good job, the Pope said. He added that Cardinal Gerard Müller, Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, held a special meeting on the theme of the Marian apparitions in the Bosnian town.

Arms dealers

The Argentine Pontiff also called the powerful of the world who call for peace, but finance wars, hypocrites. “Who speaks only of peace and have no peace is a contradiction. One who talks about peace and promotes war, for example, by selling weapons, is a hypocrite,” he said.

Young  people, technology

The next question referred to when Francis spoke to the young people of Sarajevo, in which the Pope had recommended caution in the use of the Internet and TV. According to Pope Francis, it is a vice to be “too attached to the computer.” He noted  that it “hurts the soul” and “takes away our freedom.”

While acknowledging technology has its benefits and helps advance humanity, he warned that, if misused, there is a risk of lost communication in families.

The Argentine Pontiff noted that he finds it interesting how many parents say to him that when their children are at the table on their cell phones, ‘they are in another world.’

The Pope then gave a practical suggestion: place the computer in “common areas” of the house, far enough away from the children’s rooms.

Becoming dependent on the internet, he said, can lead to various problems. Rather than focusing on the beautiful things like family, social activities, art and sport, such addictions can spiral into problems, even ‘dirty things,’ like pornography,  consumerism, and wasted time.

France

The last question was on whether the Pope is planning to visit France. To this question, the Pope said, “I will go to France. I promised the French bishops I would go.”

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On the NET:

English Transcript of Papal Flight Press Conference (courtesy of Gerard O’Connell, America Magazine): http://americamagazine.org/content/dispatches/transcript-popes-press-conference-flight-sarajevo-rome

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Deborah Castellano Lubov

Deborah Castellano Lubov is Senior Vatican & Rome Correspondent for ZENIT; author of 'The Other Francis' ('L'Altro Francesco') featuring interviews with those closest to the Pope and preface by Vatican Secretary of State Cardinal Parolin (currently published in 5 languages); Deborah is also NBC & MSNBC Vatican Analyst. She often covers the Pope's travels abroad, often from the Papal Flight (including for historic trips such as to Abu Dhabi and Japan & Thailand), and has also asked him questions on the return-flight press conference on behalf of the English-speaking press present. Lubov has done much TV & radio commentary, including for NBC, Sky, EWTN, BBC, Vatican Radio, AP, Reuters and more. She also has contributed to various books on the Pope and has written for various Catholic publications. For 'The Other Francis': http://www.gracewing.co.uk/page219.html or https://www.amazon.com/Other-Francis-Everything-They-about/dp/0852449348/

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