It had the potential of a being a very awkward meeting between two world leaders whose views couldn't be more different on several issues.
On the eve of the Pope's meeting with Trump, Jesuit Father Antonio Spadaro, editor of an influential Italian Jesuit journal, noted that the differences between the two were drawing a lot of attention.
Ah, the ol' "what are you feeding him" line. In addition, he gave Trump copies of his documents on The Joy of the Gospel, on the family and Laudato Si' on the environment. During the 2016 presidential election, Pope Francis had been critical of the then-candidate's stance on immigration and in particular of his plans to build a border wall with Mexico. During the presidential campaign, the Pope - who is revered for his deep humility and honest affinity for the poor and downtrodden - was cutting about Trump's plan to build a border wall with Mexico.
Accompanied by his wife Melania and daughter Ivanka, Trump met Francis in the private library of the Apostolic Palace, the lavish papal residence that the current pope eschews in favor of more modest lodgings.
The White House saidTrump and the pontiff "focused on how the United States, the Holy See, and the worldwide community can work together to combat terrorism" in their closed-door meeting. "We may get a riveting tweet or two from the president". "And that's a hard balancing act".
The charismatic 80-year-old - a decade Trump's senior - warmly shook the First Lady's hand and said, via an interpreter, "What do you give him to eat?" At one point, Francis kidded with the first couple.
"Potizza", she said with a smile.
The pope handed out tokens, in white boxes, to each member of the delegation.
"Many of those who possess more resources and economic or political power seem mostly to be concerned with masking the problems or concealing their symptoms, simply making efforts to reduce some of the negative impacts of climate change", the encyclical reads.
Trump's gift for the pontiff was wrapped in a big blue box. These are books from Martin Luther King. I was raised "church multiple times a week or you're going to hell, if you ever masturbate you're going to hell, if you even think something less than good, you might as well have done it. and also you're going to hell" Catholic. Smiling, Francis explained that he doesn't speak English well and needs a translator, but added that he was "very happy to meet" Trump. According to reporters who witnesses the exchange, Francis said it's an olive, which is a symbol of peace.
"We can use peace", Trump responded.
"He is something", Trump later said of his host. Trump was bringing "a message of tolerance and of hope to billions", he said.