Brasilia, Brazil, May 29, 2019 / 23:00 pm
Pope Francis has written a letter to jailed former Brazilian president Luiz Inacio Lula de Silva, encouraging him to respect human life and freedom, and exhorting the politician to trust in Jesus Christ.
Popularly known as "Lula," Brazil's former president is serving a nearly nine year prison sentence for money laundering and other corruption charges.
The Vatican Secretary of State confirmed the authenticity of the letter.
The May 3 letter was sent by Pope Francis in response to an "attentive letter" from the former president of Brazil, in which "Lula" thanked the Holy Father for his contribution to the defense of human rights and offered the pope an assessment of Brazil's political situation.