Holy Father to visit homeless shelter in Rome

.- This coming Sunday morning, Pope Benedict XVI will pay a visit to a social services center run by Caritas Rome near the central Termini train station. Speaking to reporters this morning in a press conference at Vatican Radio headquarters, the Vicar of Rome, Cardinal Agostino Vallini, released the details of the visit.

The Holy Father will start by meeting the medical staff of the on-site outpatient clinic and continue to the pharmacy and shelter, which are all a part of the site in the heart of Rome. After having stopped at these locations, he will go on to the cafeteria, where he will unveil a commemorative plaque and bless the first stone to be used in upcoming renovations to the 1987 building.

Pope Benedict will then exchange greetings with the administrator of the State Railway, a guest from Caritas' Termini Station shelter and Cardinal Agostini himself. The Pope will then deliver a speech.

L'Osservatore Romano reported that since its inauguation the site has served 1,200,000 people. The last time the Pope visited a Caritas site in Rome was three years ago when he went to their facility in Colle Oppio.

The Vatican newspaper quoted Cardinal Vallini as saying that the visit is "a pastoral act... a sign of encouragement to all those who make use of this intregrated pole of reception and of contrast to marginalization."

Cardinal Vallini added that "the Christian community cannot forget or act like they don't see the excluded people. For us the true faith is that which becomes love-charity."

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