The last time a pope took part in an International Eucharistic Congress was in the year 2000, when John Paul II attended the event in Rome.
Pope Francis will depart for Hungary from Rome’s Fiumicino International Airport at 6 a.m. on Sept. 12, arriving at Budapest International Airport at 7:45 a.m.
After an official welcome, he will meet for half an hour with Orbán and Hungarian President János Áder at the Museum of Fine Arts, located in Budapest’s Heroes’ Square.
Earlier this month, the Vatican’s “foreign minister” rejected suggestions that Pope Francis’ decision to make just a brief trip to Hungary was connected with the policies of the country’s government.
“No, it’s not any judgment on a government or authorities in Hungary,” Archbishop Paul Gallagher told an interviewer. “The pope was very clear right from the beginning that he was going to Budapest exclusively to celebrate the concluding Mass of the International Eucharistic Congress.”
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