Pope is going to Canada

Pope is going to Canada

Francis took off for Canada from Rome’s Fiumicino airport at 9:16 a.m. on Sunday. With his 37th Apostolic Visit he intends to support the reconciliation process with the Native Canadians.

In a blue Airbus A330 of Italian airline ITA, Francis flew in the morning to Edmonton, the capital of the Canadian province of Alberta, where the Pope is expected to arrive in the early evening of Central European time.

The six-day “repentance” visit offers the pope an opportunity to meet with Canadian indigenous representatives of the First Nations, the Métis and Inuit, who are hoping for support from Francis in the process of reconciliation against a backdrop of indigenous suffering. Meetings with representatives of churches and religious orders and visits to the Pope courtesy of Governor General Mary May Simon and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau are also on the agenda. Tour stops are Edmonton, Quebec and Iqaluit on the Arctic Ocean, a visit to the community of Maskavasis and a pilgrimage to the traditional feast of St. Anne at Lac Sainte Anne.

“walk together”

During the visit of several indigenous delegations to Rome in March, Francis had already apologized for the church’s crimes against the indigenous people. Background There is the cultural alienation, abuse and mistreatment of Indigenous children in the so-called church-run Canadian residential schools in the 19th and 20th centuries.

The motto of the Pope’s visit to Canada is “walking together” and points to the path of reconciliation as well as the style of the Church’s synodality, which should take concrete shape in dialogue, common conscience and fraternity. The Catholic Church brought European missionaries to the so-called “New World” in the early 17th century. Today, about 63 percent of the 38 million Canadians call themselves Christians, and about half of them are Catholic.

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deep desire to encounter

In a telegram greeting to Italian President Sergio Mattarella this Sunday, Pope Francis speaks of a “lively desire” for an encounter with Canada’s indigenous people. He prays deeply for the well-being of the Italian people, continues to write to Francis Mattarella, and has also addressed strings of congratulations to the countries of Switzerland, France, Great Britain and Iceland.

“Let’s be careful – this is a journey of repentance!”

Speaking to accompanying reporters during his flight to Edmonton, Pope again emphasized the main reason for the visit and warned against misinterpretations: “Let’s be careful; it’s a journey of penance – let’s do it in this spirit.” Do it,” Francis appealed to the papal delegation and several media representatives on board.

first stop edmonton

The first stop on Canada’s six-day papal visit (July 24 to 30) is Edmonton, where Francis is expected this Sunday (7:20 a.m. CET, 11:20 a.m. in Canada). There are two meetings with indigenous representatives in the program on Monday. In addition to Edmonton, Quebec and Iqaluit are employed as further stations on the Arctic Ocean.

-Updated 13.00: Pope’s words on board –

(Vatican News – PR)

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