President Obama Sends Private Message to New Pope

By Brian Shields

Tue Mar 19th, 2013 10:30pm America/Los_Angeles

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WASHINGTON (AP) – The White House says President Barack Obama has sent a letter to the new pope.

Obama sent the letter with the U.S. delegation that traveled to Rome for Pope Francis’ installation Tuesday, led by Vice President Joe Biden, the first Roman Catholic to be elected vice president. A senior official with the U.S. Embassy passed the letter on to an official at the Vatican.

A White House spokesman says the letter is private and wouldn’t disclose any details about its contents.

Former Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio of Argentina was elected pope last week. Obama said he hopes to work with the pontiff to promote peace, security and dignity for people of all faiths. He said the selection of the first pope from the Americas speaks to the region’s strength and vitality.

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