September 24, 2010.
The Vatican has released the official program for Benedict XVI's visit to Spain, from 6 to 7 November. The Pope will be in Spain for 32 hours and will visit Santiago de Compostela and Barcelona. It will be his second visit to Spain. His first was in July 2006.Eusebio Val
Correspondent, 'La Vanguardia' (Spain)
"It will be a very interesting message from the Pope, both in Santiago and Barcelona, a message that transcends Spain and that is a message to all of Europe which has become largely secular and is of great concern to the Vatican."
On Saturday November 6, the Pope will depart Rome’s Fiumicino Airport for Santiago de Compostela. There he will be received by the Prince and Princess of Asturias, Felipe and Letizia de Borbon. After visiting the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela, he will pray at the tomb of St. James.
The Pope will have lunch with the Spanish cardinals and the executive of the Spanish Episcopal Conference.
At half past four, he’ll celebrate Mass in the square to mark the Jubilee Holy Year of Compostela. Immediately afterwards, he will fly to Barcelona, where he will spend the night.
Correspondent 'La Vanguardia' (Spain)
"It's an important trip because it is the Holy Year of Compostela, therefore, which is why he’s going to Santiago. Barcelona is also important because he will consecrate the Sagrada Familia church as a basilica. It’s taken a long time to build the church, which means a lot for Barcelona and Catalonia. It’s a much-anticipated event."
The next day, the Pope will meet with the King of Spain in one of the rooms of the Sagrada Familia. Shortly afterwards, he will celebrate a Mass to consecrate the church and proclaim it a Basilica. He’ll then have lunch with all the Spanish bishops. In the afternoon he will visit the "Nen Deu" foundation which cares for disabled children.
The Pope’s visit to Spain will be fleeting, lasting just 32 hours, but millions of Spanish in Santiago and Barcelona will be accompanying him.