Pope Plans June Visit to Assisi

HNP Communications Franciscan World

ASSISI, Italy — Pope Benedict  XVI will be making a pastoral visit here in June that will include prayer, lunch with the bishops of Umbria, and a meeting with young people in the square of the basilica.

In a letter dated Dec. 8, Archbishop Domenico Sorrentin, announced “with great joy” that on Sunday, June 17, the pope will visit the city and the diocesan community.

According to Zenit news organization, as soon as he learned of the papal visit,  Fr. Jose Rodriguez Carballo, general minister of the Order of Friars Minor, addressed a letter of gratitude to the pope.

The event is of interest “not only to our fraternities which live and work in the diocese of Assisi but also to our universal fraternity,” Fr. Carballo told the pontiff.

Because “Assisi is Francis’ city … we were born in Assisi, and from Assisi the Seraphic Doctor sent us ‘two by two’ around the world to proclaim peace and penance,” he said.

“Moreover, your ‘pilgrimage’ to Assisi is taking place while our order is approaching the eighth centenary of its foundation, and our itinerary had as its starting point Francis’ dialogue with the Crucifix of San Damiano, a dialogue that Your Holiness proposed on several occasions as the key to understand the human and evangelical venture of the ‘Poverello,'” continued his letter to the pope.

Details about the pope’s visit are available on the Web site of Zenit.