During the flight this morning from Rome to Kenya’s capital of Nairobi, Pope Francis, as is customary, sent telegrams to the heads of states of the countries over which he flew. The first was sent to the President of Italy, Sergio Mattarella, in Italian, and the others were sent to the presidents of Greece, Egypt, Sudan and Ethiopia, in English.
The telegrams are published below.
To His Excellency
Honorable Sergio Mattarella
President of the Italian Republic
As I prepare for an apostolic journey to Kenya, Uganda and Central African Republic, moved by my great desire to meet the brothers in faith and the populations of those dear nations, it pleases me to send to you Mr. President this expression of a respectful greeting, which I accompany with special prayers for the good and prosperity of all the Italian people.
Franciscus pp.[Original Text: Italian]
His Excellency Prokopis Pavlopoulos
President of the Hellenic Republic
I send cordial greetings to Your Excellency and to your fellow citizens as I fly over the country on my way to Kenya for a pastoral visit. I invoke divine blessings upon greece, and I pray that Almighty God may bless you all with peace and well-being.
His Excellency Abdel Fattah Al Sisi
President of the Arab Republic of Egypt
As i fly over your country on my way to Kenya for a pastoral visit, I extend cordial greetings to Your Excellency and the people of Egypt. Invoking the blessing of the Almighty upon the nation, I pray that he may grant you well-being and peace.
His Excellency Omar Al-Bashir
President of the Republic of the Sudan
Upon entering the airspace of the nation as I travel to Kenya for a pastoral visit, i extend cordial greetings to your excellency and your fellow citizens. I pray that the Almighty may grant the Sudan divine blessings of peace and prosperity.
His Excellency Mulatu Teshome
President of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia
As I travel over Ethiopia on my way to Kenya for a pastoral visit, I send cordial greetings to Your Excellency and to your fellow citizens. Assuring you of my prayers for the peace and well-being of the nation, i invoke divine blessings upon all of you.
Franciscus pp.[Original Text: English]