“The pope did not enter into the details of the situation of Mrs. Davis, and his meeting with her should not be considered a form of support of her position in all of its particular and complex aspects,” the Rev. Federico Lombardi, the Vatican spokesman, said in a statement released on Friday morning…

“Pope Francis met with several dozen persons who had been invited by the Nunciature to greet him as he prepared to leave Washington for New York City,” Father Lombardi said in the statement, referring to the Vatican’s term for its embassy.

He added: “Such brief greetings occur on all papal visits and are due to the pope’s characteristic kindness and availability. The only real audience granted by the pope at the Nunciature was with one of his former students and his family.”