Pope Francis receives a phone call during general audience


His Holiness spoke quietly on the phone for about a minute as the crowd waited in silence.

To the surprise of the crowd gathered in St. Peter’s Square, Pope Francis interrupted Wednesday’s general audience and answered the phone.

On May 17, after the Pope greeted English-speaking pilgrims in a public audience, one of his assistants walked over to where Pope Francis was sitting and handed him a mobile phone.


His Holiness spoke quietly on the phone for about a minute as the crowd waited in silence.

After the telephone conversation, the general audience resumed as usual, with Vatican officials reading out the German translation of the Pope’s catechesis.

It’s rare to see the Pope on his cell phone, but it’s not the first time he’s answered a call during Wednesday’s audience.

This was the fourth time in at least two years that Pope Francis has called during a general audience.


Pope Francis answered the phone during general audiences in August and December 2021. The pope was also seen speaking on the phone from his mobile phone at the beginning of March’s audience.

Pope Francis at the Wednesday General Audience in St. Peter's Square on March 15, 2023. Daniel Ibanez/CNA

Pope Francis at the Wednesday General Audience in St. Peter’s Square on March 15, 2023. Daniel Ibanez/CNA

During his audience this week, the Pope shared the story of St. Francis Xavier, saying he is considered “the greatest missionary of our time.”

Pope Francis said, “Saint Francis Xavier, who in such poverty accomplished such a feat with such courage, gives us this zeal, this zeal to live and preach the Gospel. Like,” he said.



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