JBalvin Is ‘Sure’ the Pope Likes His Music Because He Likes ‘Reggaeton’
During Pope Francis’ first Vitae Summit, he invited a number of influential actors, musicians, and artists to visit him at the Vatican. Among the stars who congregated there was reggeatón superstar J Balvin, who apparently had a great time hanging out with the Pope, if his Instagram is any indication.
The Vitae Global Foundation works to “leverage the arts, media, and entertainment to trigger a cultural transformation that promotes the common good, universal values, and an encounter between people,” reports Hola.
Balvin posted a series of photos on Instagram, documenting his meeting with Pope Francis. When asked later by the press if he thinks the Pope likes his music, he said, “I am sure he likes it. He likes football, he likes reggeatón and we had a good connection.” He added, jokingly, “I will give him a record as a gift.”
The list of attendees who met with Pope Francis between August 31 and September 1 encompassed performers of all kinds, including Denzel Washington, Andrea Bocelli, Hayley Atwell, David Oyelowo, Marcus Mumford, and many more. J Balvin was one of the last performers to meet with Pope Francis, and he’d like to think he was the Pope’s favorite.
According to Al Día, Balvin went into more detail about why he’s so fond of this particular Pope, labeling him as “a totally different Pope than the previous ones.” He went on to note that Pope Francis has a way of connecting with younger people by keeping it real and knowing how to talk to them. Balvin explained that “he acts as if he is the same person who came out of his neighborhood and this is what everyone says. He’s genuine, he doesn’t pretend to change his essence because he’s the Pope.”
A report from Newsweek reveals that the Vitae Summit came just a couple of weeks after a series of meetings about the future of Pope Francis’ tenure with the Vatican. Rumors of his declining health and possible retirement were all but confirmed when Pope Francis elevated 20 men to become cardinals in August, per The Guardian.
Since 16 of them were under the age of 80, they’ll be able to vote in papal elections and potentially choose Pope Francis’ successor in anticipation of his retirement.
However, his first (and potentially only) Vitae Summit was a successful effort. According to Vatican News, the Pope has been a longtime appreciator of the arts, and have previously called artists “guardians of beauty, ambassadors of a culture of encounter, and witnesses of hope for all humanity.” Now that the Summit has concluded, the event’s organizers will begin hosting international events to exact the plans outlined during Pope Francis’ various meetings.
Luis Quinelli, the founder and president of VITAE Global, wanted the Summit to act as a counter to the increasing amounts of hate and negativity perpetuated by social media and international divisiveness, calling on artists to understand the responsibility they have to spread love and positivity throughout the world.
“Our intention is to create an opportunity where the participants, with the presence and inspiration of the Holy Father, will be able to share experiences, opinions and to collaboratively find messages that spark inspiration, provoke thought and turn people toward content that is deeply meaningful,” he said.