Pope Francis told reporters in Spain that he is ditching the bulletproof “popemobile” despite serious safety concerns, referring to it as a glass “sardine can” that prevents him from mingling with people.
The Pope told Barcelona newspaper La Vanguardia that he understood the risks but prefers other methods of transportation, saying that he wasn’t concerned with safeguarding his own life.
“It’s true that anything could happen, but let’s face it, at my age I don’t have much to lose,” he said in the interview published Friday, CNN reported.
“I know that something could happen to me, but it’s in the hands of God.”
Since 1981, when Pope John Paul II escaped an assassination attempt, each Pope has used the glass-sided Popemobile when in public, but Pope Francis is known for his affinity to walk amongst the people during his tours.
The Pope’s travel arrangements have cause serious crowd control issues. In Brazil, he made rode through downtown Rio de Janeiro in a hatchback Fiat. At one point the small car was pinned between a bus and swarms of devotees trying to touch the Pope.