A Catholic cardinal in Mexico City has announced that Pope Francis will pay his first visit to Mexico next February, arriving on the 12th.
But Cardinal Norberto Rivera Carrera offered no further details, such as the length of the stay. And the Vatican has not confirmed the travel plans.
There has been much speculation about the pope’s visit since church officials confirmed last month that Francis would visit in 2016, and politicians have been eager to issue invitations to visit specific states, or speak to Congress.
Their enthusiasm was denounced by a church spokesman, who said it was due to “the decadence of the political class” wishing to take advantage of the pope’s popularity.
Hugo Valdemar Romero of the archdiocese of Mexico City also said it was unlikely that Francis would speak to Congress, which he did during his visit to the United States in September.
It was while on that visit that the pope said he had wanted to enter the U.S. from Mexico as a sign of solidarity with migrants, but it was reported that his schedule wouldn’t allow it.
He has also said he wishes to spend a full week in Mexico, and a visit to the Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe would be on his itinerary.
The last papal visit to Mexico was that of Benedict XVI in March 2012.
Source: Catholic News Service (en)