The Catholic Pontiff, Pope Francis, has offered prayers for peace and progress of Nigeria.
The Pontiff said the prayers when he granted audience to Nigerian pilgrims during the 2022 special pilgrimage to Rome organised by the Nigerian Christian Pilgrim Commission (NCPC).
According to a press statement issued in Abuja recently by the NCPC’s deputy director/head of media and public relations, Celestine Toruka, the pilgrims were led to the papal audience at the Vatican City by his Grace, Most Rev. Ignatius Kaigama, among other high-profile personalities.
The Pontiff also received the Nigerian flag from the Nigerian pilgrims before he offered the prayers even as he also prayed for those who lost their lives in the floods in Nigeria.
The NCPC executive secretary, Rev. Yakuba Pam, in his remarks, described the audience with the pope as “spiritually fulfilling” and he commended the “good conduct of the pilgrims” during the special pilgrimage.
He regretted that the pilgrims were not able to visit Israel as a result of some inadequacies and operational reasons.
Rev. Pam, according to the statement, assured the pilgrims, especially the self-sponsored, that the commission would come up with a mechanism to accommodate them in the next pilgrimage exercise.
Blueprint gathered that no fewer than 112 pilgrims participated in the NCPC 2022 special pilgrimage to Rome, made up of self-sponsored pilgrims, Lagos and Enugu pilgrims as well as some high-profile personalities which included the deputy governors of Enugu and Nasarawa states as well as some first class traditional rulers.