Pope Francis practiced what he preaches on Thursday, when he stopped the Papal procession to help a police officer who was bucked off of her horse.
It was the last day of the The Pope’s visit to Iquique, Chile, and he and his entourage were making their way past a crowd of admirers. The popemobile passed closely a police officer mounted on horseback, quickly followed by security and the rest of his procession. The tight space spooked the cop’s mount, which threw her to the ground in its frenzy.
Without a moment’s hesitation, Pope Francis signalled his driver to stop his trademark vehicle. He rushed to the officer’s side, and stayed with her until medics arrived. Later, officials from the Catholic church said that The Pope offered “words of consolation” to the fallen public servant, who remained conscious until help could arrive.
Break in protocol -- Pope Francis stops the popemobile to attend to a policewoman who was thrown off her horse as he passed behind her in Iquique, Chile pic.twitter.com/eSU41Cw5By— AFP news agency (@AFP) January 18, 2018
The woman’s status is unknown.
According to the TMZ, Pope Francis made his visit to Chile in hopes of putting an end to the country’s conflict with the Mapuche people, the indigenous people of the region. He urged Chilean citizens to chose peace and show compassion to the Mapuche.
“Let us be attentive to the lack of steady employment, which destroys lives and homes. Let us be attentive to those who profit from the irregular status of many immigrants, who don’t know the language or who don’t have their papers in order. Let us be attentive to the lack of shelter, land and employment experienced by so many families,” The Pope said in his final mass during the trip.
However, Pope Francis was also forced to apologize for comments he made during the trip in regards to a Bishop who is accused of covering up years of alleged sexual abuse of minors. The Pope angered victims by asserting that there was “no proof” of the accusations. He walked back the statement earnestly.
"Here I have to apologize because the word 'proof' hurt them, it hurt a lot of abused people," he told reporters. "I know how much they suffer. And to hear that the pope told them to their face that they need to bring a letter with proof? It's a slap in the face."