Winnipeg boy gets question answered by Pope Francis

If you had one question for Pope Francis, what would you ask?

Well, a Grade 4 student named Ryan, from Winnipeg, had that once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, and this is the question he asked:

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"Dear Pope Francis, it's an honour to ask you my question. My question is, what did God do before the world was made?"

The question, sent by letter to Francis, was published in the book "Dear Pope Francis," which was released on March 1.

In total, the letters of 30 kids, ranging in ages from six to 13, and the Pope's responses were published in the book. About 250 letters were initially received in 14 languages from 26 countries across the world. That number was whittled down to 50 for Pope Francis to choose from.

Ryan was the only participant from Canada.

"I was really curious when I wrote the question down, but the hardest part for me was drawing the picture," he told CTV News.

Ryan added he thought "before the world was made" it was "pitch black," and "God felt kind of lonely."

In the book, Pope Francis answers Ryan’s question by saying God first created time, but “before creating anything, God loved” because “God is love.”

Ryan and several of the other children also had the opportunity to go to Rome.

There he presented the Pope with maple syrup, and he received some gifts as well.

"He gave me a blessed rosary, and he gave me this medal," said Ryan.

Back home in Winnipeg, his principal, Jeannine Pistawka, at the Roman Catholic St. Ignatious School, is "incredibly proud" of what he's accomplished.

"We are getting kids to think about big questions and be critical thinkers, and ask about the world around them," she said.

With a report from CTV News' Jill Macyshon



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