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Romanian leader meets with Pope

Catholic World News - March 03, 2014

Pope Francis received Prime Minister Victor Ponta of Romania in audience on March 1. The prime minister, who assumed office in 2012, conveyed greetings from Patriarch Daniel, the head of the Romanian Orthodox Church.

The Pope and the prime minister discussed “the family, education, religious freedom and the protection of common values,” as well as “other open questions … regarding the Catholic community in Romania,” according to the Holy See Press Office, which described the conversation as “cordial.” In discussing the international situation, both expressed hope that “the path of dialogue and negotiation may be followed to bring an end to the various conflicts.”

Following the meeting, the prime minister met with Cardinal Pietro Parolin, the Vatican’s Secretary of State, and Archbishop Dominique Mamberti, the Secretary for Relations with States.

The Eastern European nation of 22 million is 87% Orthodox and 8% Catholic.

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