Pope in Bari to close Med bishops' summit

Program of visit on February 23 released by Vatican

21 January, 18:03

    (ANSAmed) - VATICAN CITY, JANUARY 21 - Pope Francis will be in Bari on February 23 to wrap up a meeting on ''Mediterranean, border of peace'' promoted by the Italian bishops' conference (CEI). The gathering will open on February 19 and will be attended by Catholic bishops from 20 countries bordering the Mediterranean. According to the program released on Tuesday by the Vatican's press office, the pontiff will leave by helicopter from the Vatican at 7 a.m. and land in Bari at 8;15 a.m., where he will be welcomed by archbishop Mons. Francesco Cacucci, Puglia Governor Michele Emiliano, Prefect Antonella Bellomo and Mayor Antonio Decaro. At 8:30 a.m. in the Basilica of San Nicola, the pontiff will meet with the bishops attending the meeting and give a speech.

    Cardinal Gualtiero Bassetti, the president of CEI, will open the meeting. Speeches will also be given by Card. Vinko Puljic, archbishop of Vrhbosna-Sarajevo and president of the episcopal conference of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Mons. Pierbattista Pizzaballa, apostolic administrator of the Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem and Mons. Paul Desfarges, archbishop of Algiers and president of the regional episcopal conference of North Africa.

    At the end, Francis will visit the crypt to pray in front of San Nicola's tomb and will meet with the community of the Dominical friars. He will then leave the Basilica and will greet pilgrims. At 10:45 a.m. he will celebrate mass and recite the Angelus. At 12:30 p.m. he will depart by helicopter for the Vatican where he is expected to land at 13:45 p.m.

    ''We thank the Holy Father for the gift of his presence at the meeting in Bari'', said Bassetti. ''His word and his teachings are a point of reference for those who desire and yearn for peace in the Mediterranean''.

    ''As bishops who promote the event we make ours and relaunch the pope's appeal to the international community for a more assiduous and effective engagement in the Mediterranean area and in the Middle East''. It is a theme at the center of a meeting dedicated to reflection and spirituality that will open on Wednesday, February 19, at the Castello Svevo at 4 p.m. with Card Bassetti to be followed by the presentation of the event by bishop Antonino Raspanti, president of the scientific committee organizing the event. On Thursday, February 20, after mass in the crypt of the Basilica di San Nicola in Castello Svevo, the first theme will be illustrated to start the debate.

    The discussion in the afternoon and the Vespers will close the day. The second theme will be presented and debated on Friday, February 21, with the same program followed the previous day. A meeting with local communities has also been scheduled.

    The day on Saturday, February 22, will begin at 8 a.m. with a Mass at the Cathedral of Bari and will continue at Castello Svevo with a bishops' assembly.(ANSAmed).

    © Copyright ANSA - All rights reserved

    Business opportunities

    The information system of business
    opportunities abroad

    News from Mediterranean