The satellite that will launch the words of Pope Francis into space in June, will be blessed by the pontiff. The “Spes Satelles” (Satellites of Hope) will be released into space through a rocket that will take off from California’s Vandenberg Space Force Base. The Vatican has reported that the satellite will contain a book comprising of Pope Francis’ urbi et orbi blessing that he delivered on March 27, 2020, at St. Peter’s Square during the COVID-19 pandemic. The book has been transformed into a nanobook made of silicon plates in order to take it to space. The pope will bless the nanobook and the satellite on March 29.
Catholic News Agency reports:
Pope Francis on Wednesday will bless a satellite that will launch his words into space on June 10.
The “Spes Satelles,” Latin for “Satellites of Hope,” will be launched on a rocket taking off from the Vandenberg Space Force Base in California.
According to the Vatican, the miniaturized satellite will hold a copy of a book documenting the pope’s urbi et orbi blessing of March 27, 2020, when, in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, he blessed the world from St. Peter’s Square with the words “Lord, may you bless the world, give health to our bodies, and comfort our hearts.”
“You ask us not to be afraid,” the pope prayed. “Yet our faith is weak and we are fearful. But you, Lord, will not leave us at the mercy of the storm.”
The book, “Why Are You Afraid? Have You No Faith? The World Facing the Pandemic,” has been converted into a nanobook, a 2-millimeter by 2-millimeter by 0.2-millimeter silicon plate, for transport to space.
Pope Francis will bless the satellite and the nanobook after his weekly public audience in St. Peter’s Square on March 29.
The Vatican said March 27 the CubeSat, the name for miniature satellites, will travel aboard a Falcon 9 rocket, SpaceX’s partially reusable two-stage launch platform. It will be hosted on the ION SCV-011ION platform, a satellite carrier developed and built by the Italian company D-Orbit.
The Italian Space Agency will operate the satellite, which was built by the Polytechnic University of Turin.
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