President Biden Met with the Pope but Live Feed Abruptly Cut Short 

President Joe Biden met with Pope Francis for the first time as President in a private session at the Vatican. The two Catholics held 90 minutes of talks on Friday.

Biden has told reporters that the Pope called him a “good Catholic,” and should keep receiving communion. 

In the United States, some U.S. bishops want to deny Biden communion over his pro-choice view on abortion. The Pope stating he can continue receiving communion appears to put a papal finger on the scale in the ongoing debate. 

While the meeting reportedly went well, the Vatican abruptly canceled the plans for a live broadcast of the President meeting the Pope. The live broadcast was trimmed to only cover the arrival of Biden’s motorcade.

A Vatican spokesman said the revised plan was the “normal procedure” that has been established due to Covid, but Biden’s critics speculated that the Catholic elite may be punishing him for his pro-abortion stance.  

The Vatican released heavily edited footage after the meeting, and recapped the meeting with an official statement about the parts of the meeting the public were not privy to. In the statement, it said the Pope and the President focused on the joint commitment to the planet, the healthcare situation, and the fight against Covid, as well as themes about refugees and migrants. 

In the footage that can be seen, Biden and Francis engaged in a warm chat, exchanged gifts, and introduced delegations. 

After the meeting, a cheerful Biden said the meeting was “wonderful.” He is the second Catholic US president, after John F. Kennedy. Biden is the 14th president to meet the Pope. 

While in Rome, Biden is also to meet with French President Macron. It was the first time the two leaders met in person since France declared a “crisis of trust” over the US and UK’s submarine deal with Australia. The secret deal triggered France recalling its Ambassador to the US for the first time in history. 

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