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Prison Dance Dedicated to Pope Gives Hope

The latest flashmob to the song Pope is Pop are the female inmates at Rebibbia Prison in Rome.

As you can see by the video below, the women danced away to a choreographed routine in a jail yard to honor Pope Francis last Thursday.

For the women who took part, the routine was a welcome change to the reality of prison life.

“It gives us hope, hope that we will get through this awful period of our lives and be able to go back and see our families again,” said Gisele, an inmate from Brazil, reported AFP.

‘When we are dancing, we feel a little bit of freedom and an incentive to get through this.’


The Pope had visited the prison earlier this year where he washed and kissed the feet of 12 inmates.

“I am not religious, but this Pope has an amazing charisma. He is humble and close to the people, and he doesn’t conform to stereotype,” said Igor Nogarotto, the writer of the song, reported AFP.

As far as flashmobs go, there’s an infamous group of inmates at Cebu Provincial Detention and Rehabilitation Center (CPDRC) in the Philippines who’ve done some memorable performances, including dancing to Michael Jackson’s Thriller, Grease Lightning, Psy’s Gangnam Style, and Jai Ho from the Slumdog Millionaire soundtrack.

Here they are doing Grease Lightning (the dancing starts at the 6:40 mark):

Earlier this year, the Pontiff visited the Philippines and although he didn’t visit the facility in Cebu, it did not stop the inmates from putting together a solemn performance in honor of his trip to their country.

Over 2,100 inmates gathered to perform their “Pope dance” to We Are All God’s Children, a song written and sung by Jaime Rivera, reported the Huffington Post. The song was the official theme song commemorating the Pope’s visit to the Philippines.

Byron Garcia, Cebu’s provincial security consultant, came up with the idea to include structure in the exercise sessions. According to NPR, Garcia hoped that “inmates could consider [the performance] an accomplishment and that would teach camaraderie and teamwork.”

Here’s another CPDRC dance routine; this one is to Michael Jackson’s Thriller:

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James Burke
What keeps the world ticking? James is always looking for the answer and the latest news from around the globe. When he's not behind his computer, he's basking in the Thailand sun, or dreaming of the southern hemisphere, where he grew up in rural Australia.

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