Papal visits to Italian towns confirmed for September

.- Vatican Radio has announced the details of Pope Benedict XVI’s upcoming visits to the Italian towns of Viterbo and Bagnoreggio on September 6.

Viterbo, located some 62 miles northeast of Rome, is known as the “City of Popes,” since it served as the see of the Successor of Peter for several decades during the 13th century.  Various conclaves were held there, including the one that elected Pope Gregory X, who was later beatified.

According to the schedule, the Holy Father will arrive on the morning of September 6 for a welcoming ceremony at the Enrico Rocchi Stadium. Later in the day he will make a private visit to the Palace of the Popes, where he will deliver an address to the city. The Pope's speech will be followed by the celebration of Mass in the Faul Valley. 

The Holy Father will also visit the tomb of St. Rose of Viterbo, patroness of the city. Part of the St. Rose festivities will include the Pope viewing the famous “Machine of St. Rose,” a huge float carried in procession each year to celebrate devotion to the Franciscan saint.

That afternoon, Pope Benedict XVI will pray the rosary at the Shrine of Our Lady of Quercia with religious from 12 cloistered convents in the region. 

The Pope's visit to Bagnoreggio will be shorter. His visit will include a stop to pray with the relics of St. Bonaventure and an opportunity to greet the local residents in the city's main square.

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