Why Pope Francis didn't ride limo to Malacanang

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jan 16 2015 02:24 PM | Updated as of Jan 16 2015 10:47 PM

Why Pope Francis didn't ride limo to Malacanang 1
Pope Francis rides a Volkswagen Touran on his way to Malacañang. Photo by Josh Albelda for ABS-CBNnews.com

MANILA – A priest explained why Pope Francis did not ride the popemobile or a limousine on his way to Malacañang on Friday morning.

Pope Francis rode a Volkswagen Touran from his official residence, the Papal Nunciature in Malate, to the Palace.

In an interview on radio DZMM, Fr. Jerome Marquez noted that Pope Francis’ Malacañang stop is part of his state visit, which means that certain rules need to be followed.

“Ang kanyang point of destination ay Malacañang, so alam natin na it is the head of state of Vatican, who is the Pope, na siyang tumutungo sa head of the state of the Philippines, ang ating Pangulong Aquino,” he said. “It’s the state visit part. Alam nating lahat na it’s a state and apostolic visit. ‘Yung part na state visit, may mga protocol ‘yan.”

Marquez said one of the protocols of a state visit involves using a closed vehicle. Pope Francis opted for a “simpler” Volkswagen Touran instead of a limousine.

“Ayaw niya ng limousine kaya ito na ‘yung pinakadisente na tutugma sa kanyang dangal bilang pinuno ng isang estado,” the priest said.

Pope Francis rolled down the window of his vehicle and tried to reach as many people as possible during the motorcade.

Upon arriving in Malacañang, the Pope was seen opening the car himself in another show of humility as one of the world’s most powerful leaders.

After his state visit, Pope Francis once again rode a popemobile and waved to the passionate Filipino crowd on his way to the Manila Cathedral.

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Pope Francis rides a Volkswagen Touran on his way to Malacañang. Photo by Josh Albelda for ABS-CBNnews.com

“Ito ang paboritong bahagi ng Santo Papa dahil ito ang kanyang pagpapakita bilang tagapangalaga ng sambayanan para mapalapit sa nananampalataya at kung sinuman,” Marquez said.