Plans for Pope to tour among faithful in a golf car. The theme of the visit is "The Pope of Peace in Egypt of Peace". After visiting Al-Sisi and the great imam of Al Azhar, Francis will participate in the International Peace Conference organized by Al Tayyeb. A prayer for the martyrs of terrorism near the Coptic cathedral, where there was an attack in December. A meeting with the children of Cairo and with young pilgrims.
Vatican City (AsiaNews) - Pope Francis plans to move without an armored car when he travels to Egypt next April 28 and 29. In fact, at the Mass with the Catholics, he will also tour among the faithful in a golf car, according to Greg Burke, director of the Vatican Press Office outlining the papal visit program yesterday. The trip comes just a few weeks after the terrorist attacks on the Tanta and Alessandria Coptic churches, which left 50 people dead and hundreds of injured.
The Pope’s non-violent is in line with the theme of the visit, "The Pope of Peace in Egypt of Peace,". The trip was strongly desired by Egyptian President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi, Orthodox Coptic Tawadros II patriarch and the great imam of Al Azhar Muhammad Ahmad al-Tayyeb.
The visit will have a cultural, ecumenical, interreligious as well as pastoral character.
The Pontiff will land at Cairo Airport on Friday 28 at 2pm and after a short reception ceremony he will move to the Presidential Palace for a courtesy visit with the Head of State.
He will then meet the great imam and, after a private meeting, will attend the International Peace Conference organized by the same imam at Al-Azhar to strengthen moderate Islam against the violence of fundamentalism. The conference will also include the Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople Bartholomew I, and other Christian leaders of the Middle East. After the speech of al-Tayyeb, Pope Francis will deliver a discourse.
After the Conference, the Pontiff will meet with the civil authorities of the country: President al-Sisi, members of the Government, diplomatic corps and representatives of the world of culture.
The Pope will then travel to the Coptic Orthodox Patriarchate to meet Tawadros II and visit St. Peter's Church where last December there was an assassination in which 25 people were killed. Francis and Tawadros will pray and leave flowers and candles for all victims of terrorism.
On returning to the nunciature, Francis will be welcomed by a group of children from the Comboni school in Cairo. After dinner, the Pontiff will also greet 300 young people who are currently on a pilgrimage to the Egyptian capital.
The following day, Saturday 29 April, the Pope will meet the small Catholic community (0.28 percent). At 10 am, at the military aeronautics stadium, he will celebrate Mass for the third Sunday of Easter.
Lunch will follow with the 15 Egyptian bishops, and in the early afternoon, at the Patriarchal Seminary, he will greet with priests, religious and seminarians. Following this, the Pope will travel to the airport and return to Rome.