Pope Francis performs papal marriage ceremony aboard flight in Chile

Pope Francis performs papal marriage ceremony aboard flight in Chile
Photo credit: Twitter/Catholic News Service

Pope Francis has performed the first papal marriage ceremony on an Airbus 321 after discovering two of the flight attendants had missed out on a church wedding.

Bride Paula Podest, 39, and groom Carlos Ciuffardi, 41, had intended on having a church ceremony in their native Chile in 2010 when an earthquake destroyed the bell tower of their church, AP reports.

The couple made do with a civil ceremony and never quite got back to their original plan of marrying in a church before Pope Francis gave them a better option.

They were both working as flight attendants aboard the pontiff's flight to the city of Iquique on Chile's national airline, LATAM, when they got a chance to speak to Pope Francis.

Mr Ciuffardi said during conversation with the Pope he mentioned they were not married in a church and the pope generously offered to help bless their marriage.

"We told him that we are husband and wife, that we have two daughters and that we would have loved to receive his blessing," Mr Ciuffardi said.

"All of a sudden he asked us if we were married in the church, too."

"He liked us and he asked, 'Do you want me to marry you?'."

Me Ciuffardi said Pope Francis was pleased to help the couple and he hopes it encourages more people to get married.

"This is the sacrament that is missing in the world, the sacrament of marriage," the Pope reportedly said.

"May this motivate others to get the sacrament of marriage. I'll do it for this reason."

The couple now plan to take a mini honeymoon before returning to Santiago.


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