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Pope Francis to Sign New Encyclical on October 3

Mark your calendars, folks. History is about to be made!

October 3 will be a historical day for Assisi, Italy. Not only will Pope Francis visit, but he will also sign a new encyclical!

In a statement released by Matteo Bruni, the Director of the Holy See Press Office, the encyclical is entitled Fratelli tutti—or “All Brothers” on fraternity and social friendship. This in reference to the writings of St. Francis: “Let us all, brothers, consider the Good Shepherd who to save His sheep bore the suffering of the Cross” (Admonitions, 6. 1:FF155) (Read: What Do Pope Francis and Saint Francis of Assisi Have in Common?)

The Holy Father will be in Assisi in the afternoon to celebrate Holy Mass at the Tomb of St. Francis. The signing will follow soon after.

A Celebration of Gratitude

(Left) In this 2011 file photo, the Basilica of St. Francis with its bell tower is pictured beyond a field of corn in Assisi, Italy. (Right) Pope Francis is welcomed by the archbishop of Assisi, Domenico Sorrentino, upon his on Aug. 4, 2016. (Photos from CNS photo / Paul Haring / America Magazine and Vatican Media / Pool Photo via AP / Longview News-Journal)

According to Domenico Sorrentino, Bishop of Assisi, the town awaits the Pope’s visit with emotion and gratitude. “While the world is suffering a pandemic that makes so many people’s lives difficult, and makes us feel for brothers in pain, we cannot but feel the need to become above all brothers in love,” he said.

He added that the gesture of Pope Francis gives courage and strength to restart in the name of the fraternity.

Human Fraternity

The document on Human Fraternity (ANSA) was signed by Pope Francis and the Grand Imam of Al-Azhar, Ahmed el-Tayyeb in Abu Dhabi during the Pope’s visit to the UAE in February. (Photo from Vatican News)

Human fraternity has been an important theme for Pope Francis. In fact, on March 13, 2013, on the evening of his election to the papacy, the Pope greeted the world with the word, “brothers.”

It is a word that has always been present whenever he talks about migrants. It was also the central theme of the Pope’s visit to Abu Dhabi in 2019. And now, his signing on the Document on Human Fraternity represents the Pope’s dedication to promoting brotherly love.

As of writing, Pope Francis has two encyclicals published: the Laudato Si in 2015 and the Lumen Fidei, an encyclical that was started by Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI. 

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