Prayers and collection to support Pope's UK visit

Later this month there will be prayers and a special collection in all parishes throughout England, Wales and Scotland to support Pope Benedict's visit to the UK.

Prayer cards for the visit are being distributed to all parishioners at Mass on Pentecost Sunday (23 May).

Collections will be held to contribute towards the costs of the visit payable by the Church, which are currently estimated to be at least £7m.  More than £3m has already been raised towards this total from donations.

Archbishop Vincent Nichols, President of the Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales, said: “I would urge everyone in the Catholic community to pray for this visit and to support the collection for it as generously as they can.

“The Holy Father’s visit is a wonderful opportunity for the gentle light of faith to be contemplated afresh by everyone.  He will confirm the strong faith of our own community. But my prayer, too, is that the Visit will serve to kindle a new spiritual vitality, a questioning of the heart for many in our society who may have no religious affiliation but who are in some way seeking a deeper meaning and purpose to their lives.”

The costs associated with the state aspects of the visit will be paid by the Government. The costs payable by the Church consist mainly in the organising costs of three major public pastoral gatherings in Scotland, London and the West Midlands. 

This year’s visit of Pope Benedict XVI will be very different to the last papal visit in 1982.   The official website: is the best place to find out the most up-to-date information in the build up to the special occasion.  The website will also provide ongoing coverage during the visit. Donations can also be made on the site.

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