Swiss Preparing for Possible Papal Visit in June

FRIBOURG, Switzerland, MARCH 4, 2004 ( The Church in Switzerland is preparing for a possible visit of John Paul II to participate in the first national meeting of Catholic youth, in Berne, on June 5-6.

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The Swiss bishops’ conference announced the plan today after the conclusion of its three-day plenary assembly in Lausanne and Fribourg.

«A Vatican delegation led by Archbishop Renato Boccardo, organizer of papal trips, came to Switzerland on Feb. 26-27» to research the visit, a statement of the episcopal press reports. A specific plan for the trip will be submitted to John Paul II, it states.

«The official announcement of this visit, if it takes place, will be made a few weeks before the Pope’s arrival,» the bishops’ statement indicates.

«If the Holy Father comes to Berne, he will meet on Saturday afternoon with the young people gathered on the occasion of the first national meeting of Catholic youths, and on Sunday he will preside at a Mass in which all — adults, youths and children — will be welcome,» it adds.

The Web page of the youth meeting, in German, French and Italian, can be consulted at

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