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Recently, the Vatican approved an idea to have children from all over the world write in their best questions about God and religion to Pope Francis.

Hundreds of letters poured in, and the few questions that were actually chosen had their answers published in a book titled “Dear Pope Francis”, which is now available. Out of all of the inquiries that appear, only one came from Canada. It was written by a boy named Ryan from Winnipeg, who asked, “What did God do before the world was made?”

Not a bad question, especially when you consider it came from a fourth grader.

Ryan did have an answer in mind though:

“I thought pitch black, and I thought God felt kind of lonely,” he said.

The children who’s questions were selected were invited to meet the pope in person, so that they could hear their answer directly from Francis himself. Ryan even brought along a little maple syrup as a sort of cultural gift from Canada.

So, what’s the big answer? “Before creating anything, God loved,” the answer begins. “God is love.”

Back home in Winnipeg, Ryan’s principal says she’s “incredibly proud” of his accomplishment. You can learn more about Ryan’s big question in the video above.

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