Pope Francis rests in Vatican embassy ahead of trip to Chiapas

He urged people: "Don't forget to pray for me."

(Photo: Armando Martínez)
English 14/02/2016 20:34 AP Mexico City Actualizada 12:53

Pope Francis has arrived back at the Vatican ambassador's residence where he is staying in Mexico City, after wrapping up a visit to a pediatric hospital as his last scheduled event for Sunday.

Onlookers cheered as he passed by in a small, white, hardtop Fiat rather than an open-air popemobile that he used during drives earlier in the day.

Francis got out and greeted well-wishers gathered near the residence, blessing them and grasping their hands. He also urged them: "Don't forget to pray for me."

He then entered the residence looking a bit more energetic than he did Saturday evening.

In the meantime, Roman Catholic faithful are beginning to gather in Mexico's southern state of Chiapas, where the Pope will visit Monday.

A group of Franciscan friars and seminary students involved in aid work for migrants are among some of those getting ready to attend the pope's Mass at a soccer stadium in the state capital of Tuxtla Gutiérrez.

They say they hope Francis will mention the plight of migrants, who suffer a torturous journey through Mexico trying to reach the U.S. border.

Some in the group have been working at a migrant shelter in the city of Tenosique in neighboring Tabasco state. Friar Enrique Pool Paredes says that's "where we bring our pastoral message and psychological help to the many people arriving every day."

Nineteen-year-old seminary student Jesús Edilberto says Pope Francis is following in the footsteps of St. Francis of Assisi and that is why he has come for the Mass. In his words, "this will give us motivation and strength to continue helping these families."