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Pope visits impoverished neighbourhood in Cartagena

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(10 Sep 2017) Pope Francis landed in steamy, hot Cartagena and headed straight for one of its poorest neighbourhoods on Sunday to greet ecstatic crowds from the city's Afro-Colombian community. As his motorcade rushed down packed roads he slipped and bumped his head on the front of the Popemobile getting a cut near his eye. But when the motorcade pulled up at a small road into an impoverished area, the Pope brushed aside a bishop who pointed out the cut and threw himself into the crowd. Parents tried to pass their babies over the heads of others to get a blessing from the pontiff. Francis then visited the church of San Pedro Claver, the Jesuit priest who dedicated his life to helping slaves arriving in Cartagena's bustling slave trade port earning himself the name "slave of the slaves."Cartagena was once the biggest slave-trading port in Latin America with thousands of slaves being brought in on ships and sold in the Plaza de los Coches. In a prayer on Sunday in front of Claver's church, Francis said, "Here in Colombia and in the world, millions of people are still being sold as slaves; they either beg for some expressions of humanity, moments of tenderness, or they flee by sea or land because they have lost everything, primarily their dignity and their rights," he said.The Pope has also strongly denounced current-day slave trade, calling human trafficking a crime against humanity and leading other faith leaders to take a united stand against itBy the time he reached the church, the Pope had a bandaid near his eye.The visit to Colombia is Pope Francis' 20th foreign trip. He is the third Pope to visit Colombia. Paul VI visited in 1968 and John Paul II in 1986.You can license this story through AP Archive: http://www.aparchive.com/metadata/you... Find out more about AP Archive: http://www.aparchive.com/HowWeWork

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AP Archive 4115317 fe764ec693d5e2f6f5f43a763e4089f2 Colombia Pope 6 Pope Francis Pope John Paul II Colombia Latin America and Caribbean Social affairs
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