Thursday, December 12, 2013

Pope Francis could make first visit to Holy Land next May

Israel eagerly awaits a visit by Pope FrancisAn Israeli official has apparently stated that Pope Francis will be visiting the Holy Land on May 25-26, “The Jerusalem Post” quotes the CNN’s Jake Tapper saying. This would be the Pope’s first visit to Israel.

According to The Jerusalem Post, in September, Channel 2 reported that Pope Francis “told his close friend, Argentinean Rabbi Abraham Skorka, of his lifelong dream to visit the Holy Land, and of his intentions to visit Israel and Bethlehem” in March. 

The Pope expressed the hope that his visit would bring a message of reconciliation.

In another previous article, The Jerusalem Post had reported that when Knesset Speaker Yuli Edelstein visited the Vatican in September he told Francis he would be glad to see him visit the Holy Land and that “the Pope would be the Speaker's personal guest in the Knesset.” 

The Pope apparently welcomed the invitation, responding "I'll come, I'll come."
 
President Shimon Peres had already invited the Pope to Israel when he visited Rome last May.

A Vatican spokesman said the Pope accepted the invitation “with willingness and joy.”

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