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Why Pope Francis carries his own bag
By Updated Tuesday January 20, 2015 - 11:07am

Before his departure from Manila, Pope Francis carried his own bag while greeting officials and well-wishers before boarding the plane. In a previous interview, Pope Francis reveals the contents of the satchel. Malacañang Photo Bureau

MANILA, Philippines —  Pope Francis is spotted with a black leather satchel during the departure ceremonies at the Villamor Air Base on Monday, prompting some netizens to ask why he carries his own bag.

The pope had earlier answered this question in August 2013 aboard the papal plane from Brazil to Rome.

Pope Francis and President Benigno Aquino talk prior to the pontiff's departure for Rome on Monday, Jan. 20, 2015. Malacañang Photo Bureau

The pope waves to the crowd, which included President Aquino and other officials, before entering the Philippine Airlines plane, renamed Shepherd One, which will bring him from Manila to Rome. RP Ocampo

For the pontiff, there is nothing unusual about carrying his own bag, reacting to an Italian journalist's comment that a photograph of him going up the steps of a plane carrying a black bag had gone viral around the world.

 

Journalist:

Now, my questions are: one, why did you carry the black bag and why was it not carried by a collaborator, and two, can you tell us what was inside? Thank you.

Pope Francis:

It didn't have the key of the atomic bomb! Alas! I carried it because I've always done so: when I travel, I carry it. What is inside? There is my razor, there is the Breviary, there is the agenda, there is a book to read - I took one on Saint Teresina to whom I am devoted. I have always carried the bag when I travel: it's normal. But we must be normal … I don't know .. what you are saying is a bit strange to me, that that photo has gone around the world. But we must get used to being normal, the normality of life.

 

RELATED: 99 things Pope Francis said in the Philippines

  
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