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Vatican seeks to tamp down outrage over pope’s words of praise for Russian imperial past

AP Photo/Andrew Medichini, File

Associated Press

VATICAN CITY (AP) — The Vatican is seeking to tamp down an uproar that erupted after Pope Francis praised Russia’s imperialist past. The Vatican spokesman, Matteo Bruni, said Francis merely wanted to praise the positive aspects of Russia’s spiritual and cultural history when he praised Russia’s imperial rulers Peter and Catherine the Great and praised Russia’s way of “being Russian” during a video conference with Russian Catholic youths. Bruni said Francis “certainly didn’t want to exalt imperialistic logic or government personalities, who were cited to indicate certain historic periods of reference.” The Vatican, and before it the Holy See’s embassy in Ukraine, spoke out after Ukraine’s Greek Catholic leader bitterly complained about Francis’ remarks.

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Associated Press


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