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Pope in Lithuania: Mgr. Grusas, “wonderful coincidence” with the centenary of the restoration of the State

Il vescovo di Vilnius, mons. Gintaras Grušas

“Lithuania was pleased to receive the message that the Holy Father Pope Francis will visit the country on 22-23 September 2018”. This is according to a statement published on the website of the Lithuanian Bishops’ Conference. The Holy See Press Office has not yet announced the details of the programme for the Pope’s visit to the Baltic countries, but the statement informs that “the Pope will meet the community of the faithful of Lithuania, young people, the disabled, the clergy, the nuns and the monks, the exiles, political prisoners and Holocaust survivors”, and that there will also be a “meeting with the president of the Republic, Dalia Grybauskaite”. During his two-day visit to Lithuania, the Pope will visit Vilnius, where he will meet young people, on Saturday evening, and Kaunas, where he will celebrate a solemn Eucharist. The Pope is also expected to pray “before the Virgin Mary Mother of Mercy in the Chapel of the Gate of Dawn” in Vilnius and to visit the Museum of Genocide Victims. According to the Archbishop of Vilnius, Mgr. Gintaras Grušas, president of the Lithuanian Bishops’ Conference, it is “a wonderful coincidence that the Pope has decided to visit the Baltic Republics in the very year in which these countries celebrate the centenary of the restoration of the State”. “Jesus Christ is our hope” is the motto chosen for the Lithuanian visit. The statement recalls that Pope John Paul II, who “visited Lithuania 25 years ago”, remained “for four days in the country that had regained independence”. It also informs that accreditation will open in July. A website (www.popiež is being prepared with all relevant information.

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