Benedict XVI to Speak With Space Station

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VATICAN CITY, APRIL 21, 2011 ( Benedict XVI’s words will arrive in space when he connects with the International Space Station team on May 4.

The Pope will be sending a gift to the astronauts with the Italian member of the six-member crew of Endeavour, Roberto Vittori.

Endeavour is scheduled to launch April 29 for a 14-day mission, its last trip to space.

Vittori will be bringing the astronauts a bronze medal from the Pope.

According to the Prefecture of the Pontifical Household, the Holy Father is to connect with the astronauts at 5:30 p.m. Rome time on May 4.

Endeavour will be commanded by Mark Kelly, the husband of Gabrielle Giffords, the Arizona congresswoman who was shot in the head in an assassination attempt in January.

Mark Kelly’s identical twin brother, Scott J. Kelly, is also an astronaut and served as commander of the International Space Station. The Kelly brothers are the only siblings who have both traveled in space.

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