NEWS

Pope to visit Knock but not the North

The itinerary for the Pope’s visit has been announced

Staff Reporter

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Staff Reporter

Pope Francis

Pope Francis

The Pope is to visit Knock during his visit to Ireland in August but he will not, however, go to the North during his two-day stay.

Pope Francis will recite the Angelus prayer at Knock's main Marian Shrine when he visits on August 26th.

The itinerary for the Pope’s visit was announced today.

The Pope will be attending the Catholic World Meeting of Families in Dublin's Croke Park. He will celebrate the closing Mass of the gathering in Phoenix Park.

He will arrive in Ireland on the morning of Saturday, August 25th and fly out of Dublin the following night.

 As well as attending the Catholic World Meeting of Families he will also meet the President at  Áras an Uachtaráin and visit Dublin Castle where he will meet with Taoiseach Leo Varadkar.

Diocesan Administrator of the Diocese of Clogher Monsignor Joseph McGuinness said there was disappointment that the Pope cannot visit the North of Ireland.  “We understand that, given the brief duration of the visit and its focus of the celebration of the World Meeting of Families, a visit to the North will not be included in the Pope's itinerary,” he said.

“Many of us are understandably disappointed, but we have to bear in mind also that Pope Francis is not a young man and this places limits on the amount he can do in one short trip. We are encouraged that the possibility of a future visit to the North is under consideration. Such a visit would be a source of encouragement and support for all the people of the North who have endured so much and worked so hard for peace and reconciliation.”