reflections, updates and homilies from Deacon Mike Talbot inspired by the following words from my ordination: Receive the Gospel of Christ whose herald you have become. Believe what you read, teach what you believe and practice what you teach...
This was explained by Alessandro Gisotto, Director of the Holy See Press Office, who after receiving an avalanche of inquiries about the Pope withdrawing his hand repeatedly from a long queue of individuals who bowed and tried to kiss the ring on Monday, May 25, in the Italian town of Loreto on the Adriatic Sea, decided to ask the Pontiff himself his reasoning behind it.
Preventing the spread of germs, Pope Francis clarified to Gisotti, especially when there are so many people, arriving one right after the other, is the Pontiff’s goal. He noted how the Pope normally allows the kissing of the ring when we are speaking about single individuals or smaller groups.
Alessandro Gisotti added: “He likes to embrace people and be embraced by people.”
Vatican observers have noted that neither Francis’ predecessor Benedict or John Paul II, were not overly enthusiastic either about the kissing of the ring.