Pope will meet Mexican, Cuban presidents during visit in March
Published: January 3, 2012
VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- Pope Benedict XVI will meet with Cuban President Raul Castro, Mexican President Felipe Calderon and bishops and Catholics from the region when he visits Mexico and Cuba March 23-28. He will also deliver a message to the bishops of Latin America and the Caribbean as well as pray at the shrine of Our Lady of Charity of El Cobre in Cuba. Vatican Radio released the pope's itinerary as detailed by the Mexican and Cuban bishops' conferences Jan. 2. The pope will visit three cities in the state of Guanajuato in central Mexico; the Vatican spokesman had said Pope Benedict would not visit Mexico City because of the elevation -- 7,900 feet above sea level -- but the towns in Guanajuato are each about 5,900 feet above sea level. In Cuba, he will make stops in Santiago de Cuba and the capital, Havana. From Rome, the pope will arrive in Mexico March 23 at the airport in Leon, Guanajuato, where he will be received by President Calderon and Archbishop Jose Guadalupe Martin Rabago of Leon. During his four-day stay in Mexico, the pope will be staying at the Miraflores College in Leon, an institute run by religious sisters. The pope will meet government officials and President Calderon March 24 at the Guanajuato state government house of Conde Rul. Later he will greet and bless those gathered at Peace Square.
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