Pope Francis will visit the National Redemption Cathedral most probably on May 31, the first day of his visit to Romania, and will give a message together with Patriarch Daniel, with the audience being allowed to attend all ceremonies, the Romanian Patriarchy’s spokesperson, Vasile Banescu told Hotnews.ro on Thursday.
Pope Francis will be welcomed by Patriarch Daniel in the Patriarch Palace, right in the hall where Pope John II had been also welcomed and after that they will go to the National Cathedral where the access is free.
“The Pope and the Patriarch will deliver messages, prayers and Easter singing will be chanted, as the visit occurs right after Easter, but there will be no mass. The Cathedral will be open that day and people will be able to attend ceremonies,” said Vasile Bănescu.
As for the stage of the construction on the Cathedral, the Patriarchy’s spokesperson explained that further works are currently under way and are focused on the roof towers. He further said that the focus will be from now on on the indoor painting, which will be exclusively made of mosaic. Banescu estimated that the entire painting of the cathedral will be concluded in at least three years and that so far EUR 105 million had been spent. The Cathedral of National redemption has been consecrated on November 25, but it has been closed down again for construction works, which are estimated to end in 2024.
Pope Francis will visit Romania from May 31 to June 2. According to the Pope’s official visiting programme, he will also go to Cluj-Napoca, Blaj and Iasi, but also to the shrine in Şumuleu Ciuc.
In March 2017, Romanian President Klaus Iohannis invited Pope Francis to visit Romania.
Pope’s Francis will visit our country for the first time. The last visit paid by a Pontiff in Romania was the one of Pope John Paul II in 1999.