Pope Francis and Biden meet this week : what to expect…

U.S. President Joe Biden, accompanied by his wife, Jill, is pictured with Pope Francis during a meeting at the Vatican Oct. 29, 2021. (CNS/Vatican Media)
U.S. President Joe Biden, accompanied by his wife, Jill, is pictured with Pope Francis during a meeting at the Vatican Oct. 29, 2021. The pontiff and Biden spoke by phone Oct. 22, 2023, to discuss the ongoing conflict in Israel and Gaza and facilitating a path to “durable peace” in the region. (CNS photo/Vatican Media)

When Pope Francis and U.S. President Joe Biden first met in 2021, Biden praised the Pope as a significant peacemaker. Now, as they prepare to meet again in June 2024, peace will likely be the main topic. However, they have different ideas about what peace means.

Their first meeting happened while some U.S. bishops were debating whether Biden, as a Catholic supporting abortion rights, should be denied Communion. The Pope signaled his stance against denying Communion over politics. After their meeting, Biden said the Pope called him a “good Catholic” and encouraged him to continue receiving Communion.

Their upcoming meeting, during the G7 Summit in Italy, will likely focus on the conflicts in Gaza and Ukraine.

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