Pope Francis will visit the Pontifical Shrine of the Blessed Virgin of the Rosary of Pompeii during his trip to the Italian region of Campania next year. The visit will be the first stop during the Holy Father’s Apostolic trip to Naples on March 21st, 2015.
Cardinal Crescenzio Sepe, the archbishop of Naples, first announced the Pope’s visit in September on the Feast of St. Januarius.
In a communique released by the Holy See Press Office, Archbishop Tommaso Caputo, Pontifical Delegate of the shrine dedicated to the Virgin of the Rosary, explained the significance of the Pope’s visit to the Marian church.
“The filial and tender Marian devotion that the Pope continues to show is also at the root of the Church of Pompeii’s strong commitment towards the humblest and neediest among us”, he said.
“Today, more than ever before, the motivating forces of charity, intimately linked to the needs of justice and respect for the dignity of every person, are strongly felt. Aside from our joy for his visit, we hope that Pope Francis will show us the path to take to be even closer to and more united with our people”.
St. John Paul II also visited Pompeii on October 21st, 1979, during his visit to Naples, and again on October 7th, 2003 for the conclusion of the Year of the Rosary. Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI also visited the shrine, again during the month of the Rosary in October 2008.