House Speaker Nancy Pelosi reportedly fled Sunday mass at the Catholic service in Rome, Italy after violence broke out.
Pelosi traveled to Italy to meet with Pope Francis over the weekend and is spending time in Europe as part of the G20 Parliamentary Speakers’ Summit
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While attending a 6:00 p.m. Sunday service at the St Patrick’s Catholic American Parish, there was “commotion” outside the church, and Pelosi and her husband rapidly fled the worship service.
Initial reports said Pelosi was heckled by members of the congregation.
Pelosi’s office and the priest at the service both denied there was heckling, and said violent anti-lockdown protests had reportedly broken out in a nearby plaza. Pelosi was instead removed at the recommendation of Italian government security services, they both said.
“You probably heard or saw the commotion. Unfortunately, there was a security issue and, sadly, Speaker Pelosi and her husband had to leave,” the priest, Father Steve Petroff, is seen on a video viral video announcing her departure to the congregation.
“She was going to do our second reading today, but her safety is the most important.”
“I think she would have — I hope she would have — liked the spotlight. I was reading some of what she said yesterday.”
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“She’s here as part of the preparation for the gathering in Glasgow about climate change. She reiterated what some Italian politicians have said about the importance of listening.”
Twelve protesters were either detained or arrested, authorities said Sunday, including Giuliano Castellino, leader of the extreme-right Forza Nuova party. Some 10,000 demonstrators turned out Saturday to express their outrage at the Italian government-imposed requirement that employees have a “Green Pass” to enter their workplaces starting next Friday.
The “Green Pass” is used to verify that the person has received at least one COVID-19 vaccine shot, has natural immunity, or has recently tested negative.
“Absolutely not. She was not heckled,” Petroff later told reporters. “There was no heckling.”
ROME—@SpeakerPelosi reportedly heckled at St Patrick’s Catholic American Parish, in Rome, causing her to abruptly leave the Mass she was attending.
Paulist Fr. Steven Petroff, rector of St. Patrick's, addresses the alleged “security incident”, causing the Speaker to leave. pic.twitter.com/IxBlfiBAMp
— Bree A Dail (@breeadail) October 9, 2021
The Horn editorial team