15-August-2013 -- Catholic News Agency |

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Argentine Soccer Star Says Meeting Pope Was Unforgettable

(http://www.catholicnewsagency.com/new.php?n=27875)

ROME, ITALY, August 14 (CNA/EWTN News) .- Argentine soccer player Lionel Messi said his audience with Pope Francis on August 13 in the Vatican's Clementine Hall was a moment that he will never forget.

"Undoubtedly it was a very special moment, surely one of the most special of my life," Messi told reporters at a press conference at the Pontifical Academy of the Sciences shortly after the meeting with the Pope.

"I had the chance to approach and greet him, it was quick as there were a ton of people. At one point it got a little crazy because there were so many people, it was a special moment, but I didn't have the chance to say much more."

"It was a very special day for us, and it was wonderful to have him so close," Messi reflected. "It was of great significance for us Argentineans, that he is from our country. It's very special for us, and it was really an unforgettable moment and we are very happy."

The star soccer player arrived in Rome with the rest of Argentina's national team for a friendly match against Italy yesterday in honor of Pope Francis, although he himself did not play because of a recent injury.

Messi said he traveled with the team to Rome anyway just to greet the Holy Father and to announce a new solidarity initiative to promote education.

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