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Pope Francis sends letter to the Refugee Olympic Team

Each of the team's 10 members are directly addressed by the pope

Published: August 08, 2016 08:55 AM GMT

Updated: August 08, 2016 08:57 AM GMT

Pope Francis sends letter to the Refugee Olympic Team

Pope Francis has sent a letter to the 10 athletes in the Refugee Olympic Team participating in the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro where he wishes them success in their endeavors, reports Vatican Radio Aug. 8.

The pope's July 28 letter is addressed to all refugee athletes who he names individually.

"Dear brothers and sisters Rami Anis, Yiech Pur Biel, James Nyang Chiengjiek, Yonas Kinde, Anjelina Nada Lohalith, Rose Nathike Lokonyen, Paulo Amotun Lokoro, Yusra Mardini, Popole Misenga and Yolande Bukasa Mabika," the letter began.

"I have learned about your team and read some of your interviews so that I could get closer to your lives and your aspirations," he wrote in Spanish, which has been translated.

"I extend my greetings and wish you success at the Olympic Games in Rio — that your courage and strength find expression through the Olympic Games and serve as a cry for peace and solidarity," he continued.

"Your experience serves as testimony and benefits us all. I pray for you and ask that you, please, do the same for me. God bless you," the pope added.

The Refugee Olympic Team was formed to offer hope to refugees worldwide and to bring further global attention to the magnitude of the refugee crisis, says the Olympic Games' official website.

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