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Apostolic nuncio: Pope may visit Belarus

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Pope Francis. Photo: AFP

Apostolic nuncio Gábor Pintér does not exclude the possibility of the Pope visiting Belarus. The archbishop made a speech at the opening ceremony of a new building of the Apostolic Nunciature in Minsk on Wednesday. The 25th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Belarus and the Vatican was also marked on that day.

Gábor Pintér expressed hope to gather on a more important occasion in the future – the pontiff’s visit, BELTA reports. If Pope Francis visits Belarus, he will be able to feel the kindness and hospitality of the Belarusian people.

The possibility of the pontiff’s visit to Belarus was mentioned many times in mass media in the past decade.

The Belarusian President invited Pope Benedict XVI to visit Belarus in the summer of 2008. Information about Alyaksandr Lukashenka’s plans to organize the meeting of the Pope with the Patriarch of Moscow appeared in 2009. “The Pope will soon be able to meet believers in Belarus,” Lukashenka said at a meeting with the then Apostolic nuncio Claudio Gugerotti in 2012. Pope Francis confirmed his readiness to pay a visit to Belarus in August 2016, apostolic nuncio Gábor Pintér reported. It would be great to organize a historic meeting of the leaders of the Catholic and Orthodox Churches in Minsk, Alyaksandr Lukashenka said not long ago.