In a recent conversation with Javier Martnez Brocal, the Director of Rome Reports, a Spanish journalist, Pope Francis revealed some details.
Brocal spotted him leaving Stereo Sound, a record store, in Rome’s Pantheon district on January 11.
The owners are known to the Pope. Their acquaintance began in the “House of the Clergy” in Via Della Scrofa, when he was Archbishop of Buenos Aires.
He blessed the newly restored space, spoke with those in attendance, and walked out with a music record signed by the owner, Letizia Giostra, and her daughter, Tiziana.
The Pope wrote to Brocal a few days after the black-and-white photo went viral on the internet.
“What I miss most in this Diocese is not being able to ‘wander the streets,’ as I did in Buenos Aires, walking from one parish to another.”
The Catholic leader seemed to have admitted that he did not want his private visit to become a public affair.
“One cannot deny that it was a ‘terrible fate’ that, after taking all precautions, there was a journalist waiting for someone at the cab stop.”
He, however, advised members of the press to “fulfil their vocation, even if it means embarrassing (‘mettere in difficoltà’) the Pope.”
The Pope never hides his nostalgia for moving about freely. In 2017, he told a magazine, Scarp de tenis, that he misses being around people.
“There is only one thing I miss very much: the possibility of going out and wandering around on the street. I enjoy visiting parishes and meeting people”, he said.