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LUNCH SURPRISE: Pope Francis eats with Vatican employees in surprise visit

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
7/27/2014 (3 years ago)
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Pontiff enjoyed lunch of unseasoned pasta with blue collar workers

A "lunch surprise" usually means an item that's not on the menu offered at a lower price. At the Vatican, employees got quite a "lunch surprise" on Friday when their "boss" and bishop, Pope Francis, turned up at their cafeteria.

The Pope spent about an hour dining at a table with around 10 other people.

The Pope spent about an hour dining at a table with around 10 other people.

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)
7/27/2014 (3 years ago)

Published in Europe

Keywords: Pope Francis, Vatican cafeteria, blessing, lunch


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - "Pope Francis acted as the humblest of the workers," Franco Paini, chef of the Vatican cafeteria, told Vatican Radio. "He got here, he took his tray, his utensils, he got in the line and waited his turn, and then we served him."

The Vatican's cafeteria is located behind its central post office, on the Via Sant'Anna, on the north side of St. Peter's Square. The Domus Sanctae Marthae, where Pope Francis resides, is on its south.

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The occasion marked the first time that Pope Francis has lunched with Vatican employees. Customarily, he dines in the refectory of Domus Sanctae Marthae at a reserved table.

The Pope spent about an hour dining at a table with around 10 other people.

Paini reported that for his lunch, Pope Francis chose to have pasta without a sauce, and cod with grilled tomatoes.

"We met, he asked us how we were, he asked us how we worked, he congratulated us . he blessed us, he took a picture with us."

Opening in 2008, the Vatican cafeteria is open to employees of Vatican City and the Holy See, and of institutions linked to it.

The Pope turned up unexpectedly just after noon, picking up his tray and cutlery and joining the back of the line at around 1 p.m.

According to Vatican Radio, the canteen's chef Franco Pai'ni said the visit was "like a thunderbolt out of the blue."

The Pope was introduced to staff and asked them questions about themselves and their work. He praised the food and gave a blessing before leaving.

One culinary curiosity remains: It is understood that the Pope's pasta was likely to have been accompanied by butter or oil rather than being completely plain.

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