Family’s 20,000km journey to meet Pope

Pope Francis met with a family who made a 20,000km trip over 194 days from Argentina to Philadelphia in an old Volkswagen van.

Francis spent time with fellow Argentinians Catire Walker and Noel Zemborain and their four children, talking about their visit and praying.

Zemborain said Francis told her that they were crazy to drive so far with their children. She said it was like meeting an old friend and Francis hugged the children.

“We couldn’t believe it. They called us this morning (and) we were like in shock,” she said after Sunday night’s Mass.

“It is like being with an old friend. He was so warm. He told us we were crazy. He made jokes. The children hugged him a lot.”

Walker and Zemborain quit their jobs in food service and marketing to lead their children on the unforgettable tour of the Americas, using savings and soliciting donations to fund the tripto the World Meeting of Families in Philadelphia.

Along the way they made 12 border crossings and stayed with dozens of host families, did lots of sightseeing and schooled Cala, 12; Dimas, 8; Mia, 5; and Carmin, 3 with the help of a distance learning programme

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