Published May 18, 2013
| Associated Press
VATICAN CITY – German Chancellor Angela Merkel, mindful of the weight of Christian voters in September elections, has discussed with Pope Francis how Europe's economy should better serve people.
Merkel flew to Rome Saturday for a 45-minute session with the pope at the Vatican. Her Christian Democrat party depends heavily on support from Protestant and Catholic voters, and the chat and photo opportunity could be a campaign boost.
On Thursday, Francis blasted what he called a "cult of money" tyrannizing the poor. Merkel said the two discussed regulation of financial markets, adding that the economy hasn't always served people like it should.
She said Francis stressed the need for a strong and just Europe. The Vatican said the two exchanged views on how Europe can be a community of values, including religious freedom.