Pope Asks for Prayers for UK Trip

Takes 17th International Apostolic Journey

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CASTEL GANDOLFO, Italy, SEPT. 12, 2010 (Zenit.org).- Benedict XVI will travel to the United Kingdom this week, and is asking the faithful to accompany him with prayer.

The Pope said this today after praying the midday Angelus today with the crowds gathered in Castel Gandolfo.

“Dear brothers and sisters, on Thursday I will travel to the United Kingdom, where I will proclaim Cardinal John Henry Newman blessed,” he said. “I ask everyone to accompany me with prayer on this apostolic voyage. To the Virgin Mary, whose most holy name is celebrated today by the Church, I entrust our path of conversion to God.”

The Holy Father will travel to Edinburgh, Scotland, on Thursday, where he will meet with Queen Elizabeth II at the Royal Palace of Holyroodhouse in Edinburgh. That same day he will meet with state authorities at the royal palace, and later he will celebrate an open air Mass in Bellahouston Park in Glasgow, Scotland.

Benedict XVI will travel to London on Thursday, and on Friday he will give an address to leaders from the world of Catholic education, and then meet with leaders of other religions in the Waldegrave Drawing Room of that same college.

The Pope will pay a special courtesy visit to the Anglican archbishop of Canterbury, Rowan Williams, in Lambeth Palace, and afterward he will give an address in to the Catholic and Anglican bishops of the United Kingdom. In the afternoon, he will meet with representatives of the civil society, civil leaders from the worlds of academics, culture and business, with the diplomatic corps, and with other religious leaders.

On Saturday, the Pontiff will meet with Prime Minister David Cameron and other government leaders in the archbishop’s palace, and then celebrate a Mass in the Cathedral of the Most Precious Blood of Our Lord Jesus Christ, also known as Westminster Cathedral. After the Mass he will greet the youth.

The Pope will visit St. Peter’s residential home for the elderly in the evening to greet those who are unable to travel to see him, and will then participate in a prayer vigil in Hyde Park.

Benedict XVI will beatify Cardinal John Henry Newman in Cofton Park of Rednal in Birmingham on Sunday morning. After the Mass he will recite the Angelus with the pilgrims gathered there, and visit the oratory of St. Philip Neri.

He will conclude his visit with a meeting with the bishops of Scotland, England and Wales.

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