Pope Francis is beginning today a weeklong visit to Chile and Peru, whose main challenges will be the situation of indigenous populations and corruption.
This was expressed by the Vatican Secretary of State, Pietro Parolin, who considered it a journey that will not be simple, although exciting.
During an interview issued by the Vatican information service, the cardinal who carries out the functions of head of government, said that the main objective of the visit will be, as always, the meeting with the Christian community and the Churches.
Parolin stated that when referring to the indigenous people, he thought about the General Assembly of the Synod for the Pan-Amazon Region, convened by Francis for October 2019, in Rome.
The aim of the conclave, according to the Pope, is to identify new ways to evangelize that region, 'especially the indigenous people, often forgotten and without the prospect of a serene future, also because of the crisis of the Amazon rainforest, described as the lung of our planet.'
Hence the importance of this first visit of a Pope 'to the heart of the Amazon rainforest,' as described by the director of the Holy See Press Office, Greg Burke, who stressed that meetings with the inhabitants of that region will be 'a bit like the opening of the Pan-Amazon Synod.'
This time, the Pope will deliver some copies of the papal encyclical 'Laudato Si' translated into local languages and will greet the General Secretary of the Synod of Bishops, Cardinal Baldisseri.
The fight against corruption in all forms is a permanent item of Francis' sermon, in and outside the ecclesiastical sphere, to which he pays special attention to mercy, peace, poverty, social exclusion, migration and defense the environment.
The 22nd trip abroad of Pope Francis and the sixth to Latin America will last from today to January 21 with two stages, one from January 15 to 18 in Chile, and another from January18 to 21 in Peru.