Pope Francis thanks Rio governor for warm welcome at WYD

Pope Francis in Rio de Janeiro for World Youth Day on July 24 2013 Credit Alex Mazzullo via JMJ Rio 2013 Flickr CC BY NC SA 20 CNA 7 27 13 Pope Francis in Rio de Janeiro for World Youth Day on July 24, 2013. | Alex Mazzullo via JMJ Rio 2013/Flickr (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0).

The governor of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, has received a letter from Pope Francis offering thanks for the city's hospitality during his visit in July for World Youth Day.

"It is with great joy that we share with the population of Rio a message of Pope Francisco," said Rio governor, Sérgio Cabral Filho on Aug. 25.

He said that the letter, received on Aug. 23, "moves us."

Pope Francis was in Brazil from July 22 to 28 for World Youth Day, an event organized by the Church in which millions of young people from around the world gather with the Holy Father for prayer, catechesis and fellowship.

More than three million participants were present at the event's closing Mass on Copacabana Beach.

The Holy Father praised the work of the teams involved in World Youth Day.

"I could not fail to express my sincere gratitude for all the work" by every sector of the state government and their "effort in ensuring the smooth progress of my one-week visit to Brazil," he said.

"I also want to reiterate the gratitude for the kind provision of the Headquarters of the State Government of Rio de Janeiro, the Guanabara Palace."

He noted the Palace "was the scene of my first official engagement in Brazil and where I had the opportunity to 'ask for permission' to enter into the heart of Brazilians."

"I promise my prayers for the success of all initiatives of this government for the common good of the population of Rio de Janeiro," especially those dealing with public safety, said the pontiff.

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