Archbishop: postponement of Pope’s Africa trip ‘fell on us like a thunderbolt’ (CNS)

Catholics in South Sudan and the Democratic Republic of the Congo expressed sadness at the Pope’s decision to postpone his July apostolic journey at the advice of his doctors.

“The coming of the Holy Father was our only hope because of the respect people have for him,” said Mary Akol Chok, who planned to walk 180 miles to see him. “He would have talked to our leaders, and there could have been reconciliation and peace.”

The postponement “fell on us like a thunderbolt while we were in the midst of preparations of the great historic event for our country,” said Archbishop Marcel Utembi Tapa of Kisangani, president of the Congolese bishops’ conference.

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