Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Morales: Pope Francis to Visit Bolivia in July

LA PAZ – Pope Francis will visit Bolivia in July on a tour that will also take him to Paraguay and Ecuador, Bolivian President Evo Morales announced on Monday.

At a press conference in La Paz, Morales confirmed that Francis will travel to Bolivia after visiting Paraguay in July adding that after his stay in Bolivia, the pontiff will continue on to Ecuador.

“What did he tell me before? That he still hadn’t determined if his visit would begin in Ecuador, Bolivia or Paraguay, but they’ve communicated to us that it’s going to start in Paraguay. I still don’t have any information about how many days he’ll spend here, but I have to start to prepare for the pope’s visit,” the president said.

Morales revealed last December that Francis had expressed his wish to visit Bolivia in 2015 to him at the private meeting the pair held at The Vatican in late October.

The president had suggested that Francis carry out the main part of his itinerary in the eastern region of Santa Cruz, which is located some 400 meters (1,312 feet) above sea level, for health reasons, but the pope insisted on coming to La Paz, which sits 3,600 meters (about 11,800 feet) above sea level.

The only visit by a pope to Bolivia was made by John Paul II in 1988.

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