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Pope Francis' Apostolic Visit to Egypt
April 28 - 29, 2017

Salt + Light's Broadcast Schedule
LIVE: Friday April 28, 2017 at 10:30am ET / 7:30am
Courtesy visit to Pope Tawadros. Addresses by Pope Tawadros and Pope Francis to participants on International Conference on Peace.

Saturday April 29, 2017 at 9am ET / 6am PT
Mass in Cairo - Homily by Pope Francis

* Broadcast schedule and times are subject to change
On Friday, April 28, Pope Francis makes an inter-religious and ecumenical journey to Cairo, Egypt, to deliver a speech, along with the Grand Imam of Al-Azhar University, considered the premier center of learning in the Sunni Muslim world, to an international conference on peace.

The next day, he will celebrate Mass for the small Catholic community in Cairo and meet with bishops, clergy, religious and seminarians.

During the trip, the Holy Father will also address one of the oldest Christian communities, as well as meet again with Patriarch Bartholomew.

The Pope said that he is “coming as a friend, as a messenger of peace, and a pilgrim to the country that, over two thousand years ago, gave refuge and hospitality to the Holy Family as they fled the threats of King Herod.” He added that he would like his visit to “be a witness of my affection, comfort and encouragement for all the Christians of the Middle East”.

In mid-March, the Vatican confirmed the pope would make the trip following an invitation from President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi, the Catholic bishops in Egypt, Coptic Orthodox Pope Tawadros II and Sheik Ahmad el-Tayeb, grand imam of al-Azhar.

It will be the pope's 18th trip abroad in his four years as pope and the seventh time he visits a Muslim-majority nation. He will be the second pope to visit Egypt, after St. John Paul II went to Cairo and Mount Sinai in 2000.

The Catholic community in Egypt numbers about 272,000, less than 0.5 percent of the population, which is 90 percent Sunni Muslim.

Perspectives Weekly - Pope Francis to Visit Egypt

Pope Francis is set to visit Cairo, Egypt on April 28-29. The invitation came from Egypt's President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, the Roman Catholic Bishops, Tawadros II (leader of the Coptic Orthodox church of Alexandria) and Sheikh Ahmed al-Tayeb (Grand Imam of Al Azhar mosque). The visit comes on the heels of deadly attacks on Christians celebrating Palm Sunday Mass. The coordinated bombings--carried out by ISIS--killed 45 people in two cities. In Cairo, Francis will address the International Peace Conference and visit with Tawadros II. He will celebrate a Mass and meet with the country's bishops the following day. What does Francis hope to accomplish in Egypt? What do the minority Christian communities expect from Francis? Is there a danger of another attack during the visit? Can Francis bring hope for peace in a country battling radical Islamists while struggling to build a stable democracy? Carl Hétu, Director of the Catholic Near East Welfare Association in Canada, sits down with Sebastian Gomes to discuss the current political and social landscape while looking ahead to Francis' historic visit.pope
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