General Audience canceled on wednesday September 21, 2011 as pope Benedict XVI is getting ready to take a trip to his native Germany. Some are describing the four day visit as one of the most intense trips of his pontificate. Wednesday there was no general audience as the pope takes some time to rest before leaving.
|A huge poster of Pope B16 hanging on a large building |
Pope Benedict XVI on Thursday arrives in Germany for his third visit to his homeland since becoming Pope. This week’s apostolic journey will be his first State Visit to the country, and will take him to the capital, Berlin.
“It makes me proud to be a host for Pope Benedict XVI,” said Archbishop Rainer-Maria Woelki of Berlin. “In the last weeks, I jumped on the bandwagon of preparations, and experienced so much cheerful anticipation in the communities and facilities, even by those who are really busy with them.”
Unlike his previous visits to Germany, which were to predominantly Catholic areas of the country, this trip takes him to the heartland of Protestant Germany. In the capital itself, even professed Christians are a minority. Archbishop Woelki noted protests have even been planned at the Pope’s arrival.
“I once again invite everyone to listen first to what the Pope has to say, and then to pass judgement,” the Archbishop said. “When Benedict XVI lands in Berlin on September 22, he will be welcomed as the Vatican’s head of state, as well as the highest priest of the Catholic Church. But he also visits Berlin as a great European, and universal intellectual and example of belief. I am convinced that it is worth it to listen to what he has to say, even as a critical mind, even when not everyone agrees with everything.”