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Official: Pope Francis to visit Canada in Jul


The Vatican has officially announced that Pope Francis will travel to Canada from July 24 to 30. 

Despite suffering knee pain in recent weeks, his trip will cover over 3,000 miles across three cities: Edmonton, Quebec City, and Iqaluit, home to a large Inuit community in Canada's far north. 

The Pope was formally invited to visit Canada by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau in 2017 to apologize to Indigenous communities for the Church's role in operating residential schools throughout the country.

In March, leaders of Canada's indigenous communities came to the Vatican to extend their own invitation as well. 

PHIL FONTAINE
Residential school survivor
Our preference is for the Holy Father to come to Canada, apologize on Canadian soil, and do it on one of our territories. That is our hope and wish, and we made that very clear to the Holy Father.

During their visit, Pope Francis made a historic apology for the “deplorable” conduct of Catholics in running nearly three-quarters of Canada's 130 Indigenous residential schools where physical and sexual abuse of children was rampant.

Now, the Pope will be able to fulfill the request of Canada's Indigenous peoples and repeat his apology in their homeland. 

His trip will be the fourth papal visit to Canada, and the first since John Paul II visited the country in 2002.

JM