Pope Announces Visit to Marian Shrine in September

Pontiff’s Birthplace Named After Madonna of Bonaria in Sardegna

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Before concluding his weekly General Audience. Pope Francis announced his intention to visit the Marian Shrine of Bonaria, located in Cagliari, Sardegna. The Marian Shrine is the namesake of the Holy Father’s birthplace, the city of Buenos Aires in Argentina.

While greeting the Italian pilgrims from Sardegna, Pope Francis stated he wished to visit the shrine due to the “brotherhood” that exists between Cagliari and his native Buenos Aires.

Pedro de Mendoza, who founded it in February 2, 1536, dedicated the city to Our Lady, Holy Mary of the Buon Ayre (Fair Winds), keeping a promise made to the Patroness of Navigators. Later on, when the city was resettled by Juan de Garay in 1580, a compromise was made in naming the city.

“The founders that established [Buenos Aires] wished to name it the city of Holy Spirit,” Pope Francis explained. “But the sailors, who had brought the founders there, were Sardinians and wanted it to be named the city of the Madonna of the Buon Aria.”

“There was a dispute between them and in the end they negotiated and […] the name of the city is very long; it is called the Ciudad de la Santísima Trinidad y Puerto de Santa María del Buen Aire (City of the Holy Trinity and Port of Saint Mary of Buen Aire), but it was so long that only the last words remained: Buon Aria, Buenos Aires, but it is due to your Madonna.”

As of yet, the Holy See has not announced further details on the Holy Father’s schedule for the upcoming Apostolic Visit.

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Junno Arocho Esteves

Newark, New Jersey, USA Bachelor of Science degree in Diplomacy and International Relations.

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