Index – Abroad – Pope Francis’ remarks about Russia outraged many

Adam Kefer

Pope Francis has come under fire after urging young Russians not to give up their “heritage” as heirs to the “great, enlightened Russian Empire.”

“Never give up this heritage, you are the heirs of the great Mother Russia, move forward with it,” Pope Francis addressed the Russian youth, who gathered on Friday at the All-Russian meeting of Catholic youth in St. Petersburg.

dad a in speech convened by Peter I and II. Catherine also included former Russian emperors, two rulers who played a key role in expanding Russia’s European conquests and are known as symbols of Russian imperialism.

You are the heirs of great Russia: the great Russia of the saints, the tsars Peter the Great and II. Great Russia of Catherine, heir to the great, enlightened Russian Empire, great culture and great humanity.

– He said.

The comments sparked outrage online, with many criticizing the Pope’s decision to praise Russia’s imperialist past, especially given the Kremlin’s ongoing war in Ukraine, Politico reported.

However, in the rest of his address, published by the Vatican on the Internet, the Pope calls on Russian youth to be “artists of the world” and “sow the seeds of reconciliation.”

Pope Francis has repeatedly criticized the Russian invasion of Ukraine and called for an end to the conflict. But he also made some controversial comments, apparently blaming NATO for the conflict and refusing to condemn Russian President Vladimir Putin by name.

We constantly report on the events of the Russian-Ukrainian war in our minute-by-minute report, which is available here.