Malta's bishop announces pope to visit April 17-18

AP News
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Posted: Nov 14, 2009 10:26 AM

The bishop of Malta says Pope Benedict XVI will visit the tiny Mediterranean island April 17-18 to mark the 1950th anniversary of St. Paul's shipwreck.

Bishop Paul Cremona on Saturday said Benedict will celebrate an open-air Mass and meet with young people at the Valletta waterfront during the two-day visit.

Tradition holds that Paul stayed three months on the island in 60 A.D. after being shipwrecked on the way to Rome, and was treated well by the islanders, who sometimes sought miraculous cures from him.

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The Vatican has said the issue of migrants might figure in Benedict's Maltese pilgrimage.

Benedict has three other possible foreign trips planned in 2010, including visits to Cyprus, Britain and Fatima, Portugal.