As the Holy Father's trip to Great Britain approaches, the details of his itinerary are still being hashed out. The Pope's master of liturgical celebrations, Msgr. Guido Marini, was in the United Kingdom last week to finalize certain liturgical aspects of the itinerary and finalize the content of the missal that will be used.
With just over two months to go before Pope Benedict's arrival on British soil, Msgr. Marini has visited all of the locations where the Pope will be leading worship in September, according to the Catholic Bishops' Conference of England and Wales (CBCEW).
In an interview with CBCEW staff, Msgr. Andrew Summersgill, co-coordinator of the papal visit said that Msgr. Marini and three assistants were in Britain last week for four days to personally visit sites on the Pope's schedule and to revisit and finalize texts to be included in the missal for the trip.
Joining the Roman entourage was also Fr. Paul Conroy, coordinator of the Pope's Sept. 16 stop in Scotland, and Msgr. Philip Moger, who is overseeing the liturgies during the entire trip.
The group visited Glasgow, where an outdoor Mass is set to take place; London, where the Pope will lead a prayer vigil in Hyde Park, preside over Mass in Westminster Cathedral and pray with an ecumenical gathering in Westminster Abbey; and Birmingham, where Cardinal John Henry Newman will be beatified in the Cofton Park.
Msgr. Summersgill said that during last week's visit, the group also finalized texts to be included in the Pope's missal, which had been discussed extensively over the course of recent months. Their completion clears the way for publication of the official missal in Rome and makes it possible for organizers to finish the prayer book which will be released for the U.K. visit.
The monsignor reflected on the progress made, saying, "it was a good week and we did a lot of work, and things are moving ahead very nicely with that."