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Saturday, September 19, 2015


Poster along a Havana street announces the visit of Pope Francis to Cuba, September 19-22
Pope Francis, 78, will spend three days in Cuba visiting three different cities, including the popular Shrine of Our Lady of Charity of El Cobre.

He will hold the meetings with President Raul Castro, young people, families and religious as well as celebrate Mass and vespers all three days. But he also will bless the cities of Holguin and Santiago de Cuba — blessing Holguin from a panoramic hilltop and pilgrimage site called Cross Hill.

It will be his third visit to the Americas after Brazil in 2013 and Ecuador, Bolivia and Paraguay in July, and his 10th trip abroad since his election in 2013.

In the U.S. he will visit Washington DC, New York City and Philadelphia.

ITINERARY / September 19-27:

September 19 (Rome, Havana)
--10.15 am Departure from Rome’s Fiumicino airport for Havana.
--4.05 pm Arrival ceremony at Havana’s Jose Marti International Airport. Speech by pope.

September 20 (Havana)
--9 am Mass in Havana’s Revolution Square. Homily by Pope. Recitation of the Angelus.
--4 pm Courtesy visit with Cuba’s President Raul Castro in Havana’s Palace of the Revolution.
--5.15 pm Celebration of vespers with priests, religious and seminarians in Havana’s cathedral. Homily by Pope.
--6.30 pm Greeting to young people at the Father Felix Varela cultural center in Havana. Remarks by Pope.

September 21 (Havana, Holguin, Santiago de Cuba, El Cobre)
--8 am Departure by air for Holguin, Cuba.
--9.20 am Arrival at Holguin’s Frank Pais International Airport.
--10.30 am Mass in Holguin’s Revolution Square. Homily by Pope.
--3.45 pm Blessing of the city of Holguin from Cross Hill (Loma de la Cruz).
--4.40 pm Departure by air for Santiago de Cuba.
--5.30 pm Arrival at Santiago de Cuba’s Antonio Maceo International Airport.
--7 pm Meeting with bishops at the seminary of St. Basil the Great in El Cobre.
--7.45 pm Prayer to Our Lady of Charity with bishops and the papal entourage in the Minor Basilica of the Shrine of Our Lady of Charity of El Cobre.

September 22 (El Cobre, Santiago de Cuba, Washington DC)
--8 am Mass in the Minor Basilica of the Shrine of Our Lady of Charity of El Cobre. Homily by pope.
--11 am Meeting with families in the Cathedral of Our Lady of Assumption in Santiago de Cuba. Speech by pope. Blessing of the city from the outside of the cathedral.
--12.15 pm Farewell ceremony at Santiago de Cuba’s International Airport.
--12.30 pm Departure for Washington, United States
4 pm Arrival at Andrews Air Force Base. Official welcome.

Worker attaches banner in Washington DC welcoming Pope Francis, September 22
September 23 (Washington DC)
--9.15 am Meeting with President Obama at the White House
--11.30am Midday Prayer with the bishops of the United States, St. Matthew’s Cathedral
--4.15pm Mass of Canonisation of Junipero Serra, Basilicia of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception

September 24 (Washington DC, New York City)
--9.20 am Address to Joint Session of the United States Congress
--11.15 am Visit to St. Patrick in the City and Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Washington
--4pm Depart from Andrews Air Force base.
--5pm Arrival at John F. Kennedy International Airport
--6.45 pm Evening Prayer (Vespers) at St. Patrick’s Cathedral

September 25 (New York City)
--8.30 am Visit to the United Nations and Address to the United Nations General Assembly
--11.30 am Multi-religious service at 9/11 Memorial and Museum, World Trade Centre
--4 pm Visit to Our Lady Queen of Angels School, East Harlem
--6 pm Mass at Madison Square Garden

September 26 (New York City, Philadelphia)
--8.40 am Departure from John F. Kennedy International Airport
--9.30 am Arrival at Atlantic Aviation, Philadelphia
--10.30 am Mass at Cathedral Basilica of Sts. Peter and Paul, Philadelphia
--4.45 pm Visit to Independence Mall
--7.30 pm Visit to the Festival of Families Benjamin Franklin Parkway

September 27 (Philadelphia)
--9.15 am Meeting with bishops at at St Martin’s Chapel, St Charles Borromeo Seminary
--11 am Visit to Curran-Fromhold Correctional Facility
--4 pm Mass for the conclusion of the World Meeting of Families, Benjamin Franklin Parkway
--7 pm Visit with organizers, volunteers and benefactors of the World Meeting of Families, Atlantic Aviation
--8 pm Departure for Rome

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