It was 2013 and Jorge Mario Bergoglio had just been named Supreme Pontiff and when the team of Saved He tried for the first time to request an interview with him. The first application was like someone trying the lottery, then they were emboldening. They sent messages to him through people who could know him; they sent him letters; they sent him a DVD. "When you talk to a Spanish politician or a celebrity, they know what it is Saved for the good and for the bad, but when you approach someone like the Pope, who does not know what you are doing or who you are, it is very difficult for you to take it into account, "explains EL PAÍS Màrius Sánchez, Chief Editor Saved.
Two years ago, Jordi Évole sent a personal letter to the Pope accompanied by the DVD of the first program they dedicated to the ship Astral, of the NGO Proactive Open Arms, knowing that it was a topic that interested him especially. "We know that this letter was received by hand, and after three days, Évole received an email from the Pope saying that he would one day sit down with him," says Sánchez. "We celebrate it as if we already had it, with the disappointment when you see that time goes by and it does not happen".
The mail exchanges with the Vatican intensified. Évole and Sánchez went to Rome to meet with the Pope's communication team. They were invited to a mass, officiated by him, for refugees and emigrants who die in the Mediterranean. "At the end there was a moment in which the attendees come and shake hands with the Pope, and Jordi [Évole] He told him that he was a journalist and that at some point he would like to interview him. "The moment still did not come.
Until a month ago An email from the Pope specified the date and day: last Friday, March 22. It was a meeting of almost 75 minutes, during which the Supreme Pontiff even spoke of sexual abuse of children by priests. "We knew that he was interested in talking about refugees and emigration especially, they asked us to send them some questions previously, but we specified that we wanted to do more of them and that we would send them, some would enter and others not. to say that we were going to ask about sexual abuse within the framework of the Church, they were worried that the headline the next day was not about refugees, which is the message they want to send in. But they understood that neither for them nor for us was positive Do not ask questions about that topic ", explains Sánchez about the interview that La Sexta issues this Sunday (9.30).
Not only the process went out of the norm. Also the recording of the interview was different than usual. It was an indispensable condition to record with the Vatican cameras, so the technical aspects were in charge of the Vatican Television Center. They also pointed out the place where the interview was conducted, but instead they let the lighting and set design (table, chairs, ornaments …) run in charge of the program.
"I was very struck by the fact that, when Jordi asked his communication team for advice, those closest to the Pope told him to forget protocol and treat him as if he were a friend," says Sánchez. "We also thought that Jordi would have to wear a suit and tie, because we had seen that in almost all the interviews, the interviewer was wearing a suit, and I thought it would be quite strange. dressed as I would like, the complicated thing was to get to him, but once he said he wanted to do it, everything was easy, "the editor adds.
According to Sánchez, this interview and the first interview with Nicolás Maduro, in November of 2017, were the most difficult to achieve for the program team. Now they look for a new challenge. "But there is no other name that has been so many times in the list of pending tasks as the Pope, now I feel a void," laughs Sanchez.