(ZENIT News / Lisbon, 08.06.2023).- On the afternoon of Sunday, August 6, after bidding farewell to the staff and benefactors of the Apostolic Nunciature of Lisbon, the Pope transferred by car to the Algés Promenade in Lisbon for a special meeting with those who served as volunteers during the World Youth Day: 25 thousand people, mostly young.
Upon arrival, the Pope was welcomed by the Patriarch of Lisbon, who accompanied him in the popemobile, taking a few turns among the volunteers.
At 4:30 PM, the meeting with the WYD volunteers began. After the screening of a video highlighting the most relevant moments of the past days, three volunteers gave their testimonies: Chiara, Francisco, and Filipe.
Next, the Patriarch of Lisbon addressed some words to the Pope, to which he responded with a speech.
After concluding the meeting and praying the Our Father and receiving the blessing, the Pope moved to the Figo Maduro Air Base for the farewell ceremony.
Upon arrival at the air base, the Pope was received by the President of Portugal, Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa, with whom he engaged in a private meeting. After the greetings of the delegations and the Honor Guard, the Pope boarded an Air Portugal aircraft to return to Italy. The plane took off at 6:11 PM in the evening and landed in Rome at 10:15 PM.
Shortly after taking off, the Pope sent a telegram to President Rebelo de Sousa, in which he said:
On my return to rome at the conclusion of my apostolic journey, i once again wish to express my deep gratitude to your excellency and the people of Portugal for the warm welcome and hospitality i received during my visit. With renewed assurances of my prayers for you all, i cordially invoke upon the nation almighty god’s blessings of fraternity, joy and peace.