Pope Francis accepts the invitation of the President of Mongolia and local Church authorities, and will visit the East Asian nation from 31 August to 4 September 2023.
By Deborah Castellano Lubov
Pope Francis will make an Apostolic Journey to Mongolia later this summer.
Matteo Bruni, the Director of the Holy See Press Office, made the official announcement in a statement released on Saturday.
“Accepting the invitation of the President of Mongolia and the ecclesial authorities of the country,” said Mr. Bruni, “Pope Francis will make an Apostolic Journey to Mongolia from 31 August to 4 September this year.”
The Press Office Director added that the visit’s programme and further details will be released in the coming weeks.
Speaking to journalists traveling with him on the return flight to Rome from his Apostolic Journey to Hungary, and later during an audience with ITA Airways staff, the Holy Father expressed his plan to visit Mongolia in the near future.
Prior to traveling to the East Asian nation, which borders Russia, China and Kazakhstan, the Pope will return to Portugal from 1 to 6 August, for the occasion of the World Youth Day, where he will spend time in the nation’s capital of Lisbon, and make a second visit to Fatima.
In the most recent consistory for the creation of new cardinals, in August 2022, Pope Francis made Cardinal Giorgio Marengo, the Apostolic Prefect of Mongolia’s capital of Ulaanbaatar, the first-ever Cardinal of the country.
There are fewer than 1,500 Catholics in all of Mongolia.
Pope Francis will be the first Pope to ever visit the East Asian country.