Vatican releases Pope Benedict's schedule for Germany trip

Vatican releases Pope Benedict's schedule for Germany trip

Vatican releases Pope Benedict's schedule for Germany trip

.- The Vatican has announced Pope Benedict XVI's schedule for his apostolic trip to Germany in September.

The Pope will begin his trip in Berlin on Sept. 22, according to the Vatican’s July 20 announcement.

During an opening welcome ceremony, the Pope will meet with the president of the Federal Republic of Germany, Christian Wulff, at his residence at Bellevue Castle. Afterward, he will meet with German Chancellor Angela Merkel at the headquarters of the German Bishop's Conference.

Later on the same day, the Pope will visit with the German parliament and representatives of the local Jewish community, before celebrating the first Mass of the apostolic visit in Berlin's Olympic stadium.

On Sept. 23, the Pope will meet with representatives of the local Muslim community, just ahead of flying to the city of Erfurt, which is located in the center of the country. In that city, he will visit St. Mary's Cathedral, and will address representatives of the German Evangelical Church Council before participating in a Christian celebration with them.

In the afternoon, the Pope will take a helicopter to Etzelsbach where he will pray Marian Vespers before returning to Erfurt.

On the morning of Sept. 24, he will celebrate Mass at Erfurt's Domplatz church. Pope Benedict will then fly to the southeastern city of Freiburg im Breisgau to visit the local cathedral and seminary.

While the Pope is in Freiburg, he will meet with former German chancellor Helmut Kohl, representatives from the Orthodox churches, local seminarians, and the Central Committee of German Catholics.

That evening, the Pope will preside over a prayer vigil with local youth at the Freiburg Fair.

On September 25, the final day of his trip, Pope Benedict will travel to the local airport where he will celebrate Mass, pray the Angelus, and bid his fellow countrymen farewell with a departure ceremony.

The trip will be the German Pope's third visit to his homeland since his election.