Pope Francis caught the attention of the world last April when he brought a group of refugees home with him after his visit to the Greek island of Lesbos.
Today he had lunch with these and other refugees — a group of 21 Syrians — at the Casa Santa Marta.
The refugees, both adults and children, were able to tell the Holy Father about the beginnings of their life in Italy. The kids gave the Pope some pictures they had drawn and he brought them toys and other gifts.
The refugees are being cared for by the Catholic lay Sant’Egidio Community.
Related: Meet one of the families Francis brought home.
Present at the meal with Pope Francis and his Syrian guests were the Substitute Secretary of State Archbishop Angelo Becciu; Professor Andrea Riccardi, founder of the Sant’Egidio Community, and other members of the community; the Commander of the Vatican Gendarmerie, Doctor Domenico Giani; and two Gendarmerie who helped transfer the refugees to Italy from Lesbos.
Related: 2nd group of refugees brought to Rome in June