Vatican: Pope To Visit Iraq In March, Pandemic Permitting

Pope Francis delivers his blessing as he recites the Angelus noon prayer from the window of his studio overlooking St.Peter's Square, at the Vatican, Sunday, Dec. 6, 2020. (AP Photo/Andrew Medichini)

(AP) — The Vatican says Pope Francis will make a pilgrimage to Iraq in March, pandemic conditions permitting. Vatican spokesman Matteo Bruni on Monday announced that Francis will make the March 5-8 visit, with stops in Baghdad, and the “plains of Ur, linked to the memory of Abraham,” the Biblical patriarch, as well as to the cities of Irbil, Mosul and Qaraqosh. Bruni said the trip’s schedule will take into consideration “the evolution of the worldwide health emergency,” that the COVID-19 pandemic has created. It would be the first trip abroad for the 83-year-oldFrancis since November 2019, when he visited Thailand and Japan.


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