By Francis X. Rocca
Catholic News Service
RIO DE JANEIRO (CNS) — The cancellation of a scheduled popemobile ride through a working-class neighborhood suggests that, despite official assurances, Pope Francis’ chaotic entrance into the city July 22 may have raised concerns among those responsible for his safety during his first international trip as pope.
Jesuit Father Federico Lombardi, the Vatican spokesman, told reporters July 23 that the pope would not be taking a ride in his open popemobile planned for July 24 in the northern Rio neighborhood of Tijuca. Instead, the spokesman said, the pope’s ride to his visit to the Hospital of St. Francis of Assisi would be in a closed vehicle.