(ASSOCIATED PRESS) — VATICAN CITY — Pope Francis has ramped up the Vatican’s charity work, sending his chief alms-giver and a contingent of Swiss guards onto the streets of Rome at night to do what he usually can’t do: comfort the poor and the homeless.
A few times a week, Archbishop Konrad Krajewski takes a few off-duty guards with him in his modest white Fiat to make the rounds at Rome’s train stations, where charities offer makeshift soup kitchens that feed 400-500 people a night. Often they bring the leftovers from the Vatican mess halls to share.
“Aside from their vitality, they know at least four languages,” Krajewski said of the guards in an interview Friday with The Associated Press. “Above all, poor people need to be listened to.”
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“And when we say we’re from the Vatican, and that we’re doing this in the name of the Holy Father,” he said, “their hearts open up more.”