Trump, Pope Exchange Gifts

'It's a great honor,' president tells pontiff
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted May 24, 2017 4:53 AM CDT
Trump to Pope: 'It's a Great Honor'
Pope Francis meets with President Trump and Melania Trump at the Vatican on Wednesday.   (AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino, Pool)

President Trump met Pope Francis privately Wednesday morning and observers could detect no sign of discord between the president and the man he has clashed with on issues including climate change and immigration. After the talk, which lasted between 20 and 30 minutes, Francis gave Trump gifts, including a copy of his 2015 missive on the environment and a small olive tree to symbolize peace, reports Reuters. Trump, who was overheard telling the pontiff it was a "great honor" to meet him, gave Francis a set of writings by Martin Luther King Jr. "Thank you, I won't forget what you said," Trump said.

During the Vatican visit, Trump was accompanied by Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, National Security Adviser HR McMaster, daughter Ivanka, son-in-law Jared Kushner, and Melania Trump, who is a Catholic, the BBC reports. Ivanka and Melania wore black dresses and veils. CNN captures a light moment when the pope jokingly asked Melania, "What do you give him to eat, potizza?" referring to a Slovenian treat. Trump is scheduled to meet Italian President Sergio Mattarella and Prime Minister Paolo Gentiloni before flying to Belgium Wednesday evening. (More President Trump stories.)

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