Pope Francis marries airline employees on papal plane

19 January, 2018, 02:07 | Author: Kim Reid
  • CHILE-BISHOP

Paula Podest, 39, and Carlos Ciuffardi, 41 have been married for eight years.

"We always wanted to get married in the eyes of the church and it was something that was pending, but we never thought it would be the Pope that would do it".

The Pope was highlighting the conflict between the state and the Mapuche people, who centuries ago controlled vast areas of Chile but have since been marginalised. They had the intention of carrying out a church ceremony, but the natural disaster which hit southern Chile in March 2010 damaged the venue where they were going to hold the service, so they made a decision to postpone the marriage.

There's never a boring moment with the whirlwind that is Pope Francis, who has many times labeled the pope of firsts: Onboard the Airbus 321 going from Santiago to the northern city to Iquique in Chile, he married a couple that asked for his blessing. The head of the airline served as the witness.

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One of the pope's most memorable moments was marrying a flight attendant couple Thursday during the plane ride from Santiago to Iquique.

At this, the pontiff said: "Are you sure?", Ciuffardi told reporters.

"When people make a mistake it's necessary that they ask for forgiveness", said Monica Reyes, a nursing assistant who attended the pope's speech at the presidential palace.

- In his five years in office, Pope Francis gained a reputation for tossing protocol and embracing spontaneity.

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The excited couple explained to CNN and other journalists on the papal plane it was Francis' idea to marry them.

During the airborne ceremony, which took place at 36,000 feet in the air on the Airbus 321 early Thursday morning, the Pope said: "We hope that what you have done will be an inspiration to other couples around the world".

It all started when the pair, Paula Podest Ruiz and Carlos Ciuffardi Ellorriaga, began chatting with the pontiff when they were seated next to him during a group photo shoot.

"I asked him: 'Do you marry people?' He said: 'Yes, from time to time".

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Then, the pope asked his cardinals to draft the paperwork, Ciuffardi said.

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