Duterte receives Pope Francis’s reply to his apology

Rosette Adel - Philstar.com

MANILA, Philippines –  Presidential candidate and Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte’s assistant on Monday posted Pope Francis’s reply to the mayor’s letter of apology for cursing at the pope.

In his Facebook account, Duterte’s assistant, Christopher Bong Go, posted the photo even if Duterte earlier said he will not release a copy of the Vatican letter until the election ends.

“His Holiness Pope Francis, thru his representative, has given his divine blessing to Mayor Rody and has included him in his prayers,” Go said. “We thank the Lord for His intervention and let us continue to pray for our beloved Mayor,” he added.

The letter dated Feb. 24, 2016 was addressed to Duterte and was signed by the Substitute for General Affairs to the Secretary of State of the Holy See, Archbishop Angelo Becciu, writing in behalf of the pope. The letter bore the letterhead of the Vatican Secretariat of the State.

Becciu said Pope Francis received Duterte’s letter of apology on Jan. 21, 2015 and offered prayers for the mayor.

“His Holiness Pope Francis has received your letter of 21 January 2016... He appreciates the sentiments you have expressed,” the letter read.

"The Holy Father offers the assurance of prayers for you, as he invokes upon you the divine blessings of wisdom and peace," it added.


His Holiness Pope Francis, thru his representative, has given his divine blessing to Mayor Rody and has included him in...

Posted by Christopher Bong Go on Sunday, April 3, 2016

On Sunday, Duterte revealed to his Cebuano supporters that he received a reply to his letter of apology after cursing at the Pope while discussing in his speech last December his traffic ordeal during the papal visit. He said he will release copies of the letter when the election is over, win or lose, to avoid mudsliding.

“I don’t want my opponents accusing me of using the letter for politicking,” Duterte said.

RELATED: Catholics blast Duterte for 'cursing' at Pope Francis

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