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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.

How much diplomatic weight does the Pope have?

2015-05-09

The Holy See is the smallest state in the world. Even so, it has roughly 180 ambassadors from all over the world assigned to it. The question is, how much diplomatic weight does the Pope and the Vatican actually have? 

CARDINAL PETER TURKSON 
Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace
"The involvement of the Holy See in mediating in fostering peace is not new, it’s not new.”

The announcement of the Pope's trip to Cuba, has once again put a spot light on the Vatican's diplomatic pull. President Obama and Cuban leader, Raul Castro said the Pope played a key role in easing the ties between their nations.  

The influence of the Church on a local and global level can deal with a series of issues. From the violence of drug gangs in El Salvador all the way  the instability of Venezuela and its government. In Asia, Catholics are a minority, but still the social influence of the Church is present. 

CARDINAL PETER TURKSON 
Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace
"Just last week I was in Bangkok and I had to deal with the role of the Holy See in peace keeping, reconciliation and mediation.”

The Middle East has turned into a growing priority for the Holy See, especially with the persecution of Christians, most prominently in Iraq and its surrounding territories. 

When it comes to influence, the Pope expressed support for the beginning stages of the nuclear agreement between the U.S and Iran. In fact, the American Under Secretary for Arms Control talked about why her team included the Vatican in their diplomatic tour. 

ROSE GOTTEMOELLER
Under Secretary for Arms Control (USA) 
"The Vatican is among them. The Church has significant teachings on nuclear deterrence and nuclear disarmament so it’s a natural leader in this arena.”

After the United States, the Holy See is actually the second country with the most official diplomatic relations with other nations and organizations. It also has a presence in the UN with a status of Permanent Observer. 


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