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Congress Listens Intently to Pope Francis' Address

It was Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio), a Catholic, who extended the invitation for Pope Francis to address Congress making him the first Pope to ever do so. He touched on many global issues such as the Syrian refugee crisis, undocumented immigrants and even the benefits of family life. The Pope received bipartisan applause when he utilized Martin Luther King's "I Have a Dream Speech" to talk about Syrian refugees. He also found common ground with undocumented immigrants by sharing that he is the "son of immigrants."

He reminded everyone to remember the golden rule. In addition, he stated that it is everyone's responsibility to "protect and defend human life at every stage of its development" referencing the Catholic Church's opposition to the death penalty. When it came to discussing same-sex marriage, he said that he cannot “hide my concern for the family, which is threatened, perhaps as never before, from within and without. Fundamental relationships are being called into question, as is the very basis of marriage and the family. I can only reiterate the importance and, above all, the richness and the beauty of family life.”

He ended his speech by addressing a crowd watching from the Capitol's West lawn by saying "I'm so grateful for your presence here. ... And I ask you all please, to pray for me, and if there are among you any who do not believe, or cannot pray, I ask you please to send good wishes my way. Thank you very much, and God bless America." As the Pope made his way for the exit, Boehner was visibly teary eyed.

Photo: Stripes

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