Archbishop Martin says pope to visit Ireland for 2018 meeting of families

IMAGE: CNS photo/John Mc Elroy


DUBLIN (CNS) — Archbishop
Diarmuid Martin confirmed that Pope Francis, or his successor, will visit
Ireland in 2018 for the World Meeting of Families.

Archbishop Martin confirmed
that when he discussed the issue of visiting Ireland with the pontiff, Pope Francis
said: “‘I will come’, and he said, ‘if I don’t come, my successor will

As well as Dublin, the pope
would probably visit Northern Ireland to complete the 1979 historic pilgrimage of St John Paul
II, when rising tensions in the North made a visit there impossible.

The Irish Catholic said
Archbishop Martin made his remarks in an interview with the Irish Independent.
The Irish Catholic said that a “well-placed Vatican source” confirmed
that “all the indications from Rome are very positive about this.”

“It would obviously be
the hope that the Holy Father would make a visit to Northern Ireland and,
perhaps, some other parts of Ireland, since many Irish Catholics will want to
have an opportunity to attend Mass with Pope Francis,” the source told The
Irish Catholic.

Speculation about a papal
visit began in September, after Pope Francis announced in Philadelphia that
Dublin would host the 2018 World Meeting of Families. Popes have presided at
all but two of the eight meetings held since the first meeting in 1994.

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