In Erbil, thousands attend largest mass of Pope's historic trip to Iraq

Pope Francis held the largest mass of his historic Iraq trip Sunday after visiting war-scarred cities to comfort Christian survivors of the Islamic State group's reign of terror. He promised thousands gathered for that he would keep Iraq in his heart.

Pope's historic trip

Pope Francis held the largest mass of his historic Iraq trip Sunday after visiting war-scarred cities to comfort Christian survivors of the Islamic State group's reign of terror.

(Photograph:AFP)

Pope on his popemobile vehicle

The 84-year-old was driven in his white, windowless "pope-mobile" into the stadium, where jubilant worshippers sat socially distanced on white chairs spread out on the greens.

(Photograph:AFP)

The faithful

The faithful wore hats featuring pictures of Francis, and face-masks to protect them from Covid, as a second wave has driven up cases to around 5,000 new infections per day in Iraq.

(Photograph:AFP)

Pope spoke to the faithful

Pope Francis spoke to the faithful in the courtyard of the Al-Tahera Church, whose roof collapsed during fighting against IS in 2017. It is one of the oldest of at least 14 churches in Nineveh province that were destroyed by the jihadists. 
 

(Photograph:AFP)

'Iraq in his heart'

Pope Francis promised thousands gathered for that he would keep Iraq in his heart.

(Photograph:AFP)

Pope Francis in Erbil

A file photo of Pope Francis

(Photograph:AFP)

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