pope.to.visit.nyc


Pope Francis (pictured above) will visit the United States in September next year to attend the World Meeting of Families in Philadelphia.

The Vatican confirmed the Pope’s first extended trip to North America, including a stop in New York.

The visit was announced on Nov. 17 in a speech by the Pope opening an interreligious conference on marriage.

Philadelphia Archbishop Charles J. Chaput said the announcement was “a surprise in the sense that it was announced so early.”

In August he told reporters during a trip to South Korea that he would like to visit Philadelphia.

The Pope also noted that President Barack Obama and the U.S. Congress had invited him to Washington, D.C. and UN Secretary-General Ban ki-Moon had invited him to New York.

He also said he could visit the shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe in Mexico on the same trip — “but it is not certain.”

During his visit, Francis is expected to attend the Festival of Families on Sept. 26, a cultural celebration of thousands of people along Philadelphia’s main cultural boulevard, the Benjamin Franklin Parkway.

This would be Francis’ first visit to the U.S. and the second papal visit in Philadelphia in a generation.

St. Pope John Paul II visited the city in 1979.

Francis’ trip will be the fourth time a sitting pope has visited the U.S.