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Irishman removed by police from Vatican after shouting abuse at Pope Francis

After he was removed, Pope Francis asked those in the audience hall to join him in saying a prayer for the man
Pope Francis (Alessandra Tarantino/AP)

Pope Francis (Alessandra Tarantino/AP)

Clodagh Meaney

An Irishman who shouted at Pope Francis during a papal audience is reportedly known to the Vatican for having outbursts at Roman basilicas.

During a papal audience on Wednesday, February 2, the middle-aged man shouted “This is not the Church of God” before being removed by Vatican Police.

The man, who lives in Rome, was at the back of the audience hall, and before his removal had been shouting “mask” at intervals throughout the service.

Once he was removed, he was handed over to Roman police as is customary since Vatican City is a sovereign state within the Italian capital.

While the pope heard the man’s shouts, it isn’t clear if he understood exactly what was being said.

After he was removed, Pope Francis asked those in the audience hall to join him in saying a prayer for the man.

“A few minutes ago we heard a man who was screaming, shouting, who had some kind of problem, I don’t know if it is physical, psychological or spiritual – but he is a brother of ours who has a problem,” he said.

“I would like to end by praying for him, for our brother who is suffering, poor man, because if he was shouting, it is because he is suffering,” Francis said.

“Let’s not be deaf to the needs of this brother.”


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