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Pope Francis

Complete program of pope's trip to Fatima on May 12-13

March 20, 2017. The Vatican has published Pope Francis' program for his upcoming trip to Fatima.
Pope Francis

Pope Francis will travel to Egypt from 28 to 29 April 2017

March 18, 2017. In response to the invitation from the President of the Republic, the Bishops of the Catholic Church, His Holiness Pope Tawadros II and the Grand Imam of the Mosque of Al Azhar, Sheikh Ahmed Mohamed el-Tayyib, Pope Francis will make an Apostolic trip to the Arab Republic of Egypt from 28 to 29 April 2017, visiting the city of Cairo. The programme of the trip will be published shortly.
Pope Francis

Pope to meet with most powerful European leaders on March 24

March 3, 2017. On March 24 a historic meeting will take place between the pope and many of the most powerful heads of government throughout Europe. The meeting was announced by the Director of the Press Office of the Holy See, Greg Burke and will begin at 6 p.m. in the Sala Regia of the Apostolic Palace in the Vatican.

Lukashenko visits Pope after decade-long travel ban


Among the topics discussed during the 25-minute audience with the Pope, were Belarus’ domestic issues as well as issues relating to the Catholic church in Belarus.

Lukashenko has long been accused of suppressing human rights in his former Soviet republic.  But icy relations with the West are starting to thaw.  His meeting with the Pope and with members of the Italian government are an important first step, as improving relations between the Russian Orthodox Church and the Catholic Church could be the first step toward bridging Belarus with Europe.

Although Belarus is about 60 percent Orthodox Christian and 14 percent Catholic, the faithful are faced with laws that restrict religious freedom, such as limiting the number of foreign priests.

Lukashenko made the visit to the Pope with his 5-year-old son, Nikolai, and ended the meeting with an invitation to the Pope to visit Belarus, maybe for the first meeting between a Pope and a Moscow Patriarch.