VATICAN CITY (CNS) — After a quick flight over Italy and the Adriatic Sea, Pope Francis will make an 11-hour visit to Albania Sept. 21, making time to meet with the nation’s leaders and bishops, but also spending time with disadvantaged children and other people assisted by Catholic charitable organizations.
According to the schedule released by the Vatican July 31, Pope Francis also will hold a late-afternoon meeting with the leaders of other religions and other Christian communities. Albania has a population of about 3.2 million, more than half of whom are Muslims. According to Vatican statistics, about 16 percent of the population is Roman Catholic. About 7 percent of the citizens belong to the Orthodox Church.
The pope will spend the entire day in Tirana, Albania’s capital. His flight to Albania will land in and take off from Mother Teresa International Airport and his Mass with Albania’s Catholics will be celebrated in Mother Teresa Square — both honor the famous ethnic Albanian, Blessed Teresa of Kolkata.
Here is the pope’s itinerary as released by the Vatican. Times listed are local, with Eastern Daylight Time in parenthesis.
Sunday, Sept. 21 (Rome, Tirana, Rome)
— 7:30 a.m. (1:30 a.m.) Departure from Rome’s Fiumicino airport for Tirana.
— 9 a.m. (3 a.m.) Arrival at Mother Teresa International Airport in Tirana.
— 9:30 a.m. (3:30 a.m.) Welcoming ceremony at the presidential palace, courtesy visit with the president.
— 10 a.m. (4 a.m.) Meeting with government authorities at the presidential palace. Speech by pope.
— 11 a.m. (5 a.m.) Mass in Mother Teresa Square. Homily by pope. Recitation of the Angelus prayer. Remarks by pope.
— 1:30 p.m. (7:30 a.m.) Lunch with the bishops of Albania and the papal entourage in the apostolic nunciature.
— 4 p.m. (10 a.m.) Meeting with leaders of other religions and other Christian denominations at the Catholic University of Our Lady of Good Counsel. Speech by pope.
— 5 p.m. (11 a.m.) Celebration of vespers with priests, men and women religious, seminarians and members of lay movements in the Tirana cathedral. Speech by pope.
— 6:30 p.m. (12:30 p.m.) Meeting with children assisted by the Bethany Center and with representatives of those assisted by other charitable centers in the church at the Bethany Center. Speech by pope.
— 7:45 p.m. (1:45 p.m.) Farewell ceremony at the Mother Teresa International Airport.
— 8 p.m. (2 p.m.) Departure from Tirana to Rome.
— 9:30 p.m. (3:30 p.m.) Arrival at Rome’s Ciampino airport.
Join the CatholicPhilly.com family
CatholicPhilly.com works to strengthen the connections between people, families and communities every day by delivering the news people need to know about the Catholic Church, especially in the Philadelphia region, and the world in which we live.
By your donation in any amount, you and hundreds of other people become part of our mission to inform, form in the Catholic faith and inspire the thousands of readers who visit every month.
Here is how you can help:
- A $100 gift allows us to present award-winning photos of Catholic life in our neighborhoods.
- A $50 gift enables us to cover a news event in a local parish, school or Catholic institution.
- A $20 gift lets us obtain solid faith formation resources that can deepen your spirituality and knowledge of the faith.
- A small, automated monthly donation means you can support us continually and easily.
Won't you consider making a gift today?
Please join in the church's vital mission of communications by offering a gift in whatever amount that you can ― a single gift of $40, $50, $100, or more, or a monthly donation. Your gift will strengthen the fabric of our entire Catholic community and sustain CatholicPhilly.com as your trusted news source. Thank you in advance!
Make your donation by credit card here:
Or make your donation by check:
222 N. 17th Street
Philadelphia, PA 19103