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Papal visit to include open-air mass at Commonwealth Stadium

This will be the fourth papal visit to Canada and the first since Saint John Paul II’s journey in 2002.
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Schedule of events for Pope Francis' visit revealed, highlighted by a public, open-air mass at Commonwealth Stadium. Photo: papalvisit.ca

 The Vatican has released further details of the itinerary of Pope Francis’ historic visit to Canada, July 24 – 29, 2022. Due to his advanced age and limitations, it is expected that participation by Pope Francis at public events will be limited to approximately one hour.

“We are pleased to play a supporting role in the Catholic Church’s journey towards reconciliation with First Nations, Métis and Inuit communities on Canadian soil,” said Andre Corbould, Edmonton’s City Manager. “Our city is deeply committed to fulfilling the recommendations of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, and we welcome Indigenous Peoples and communities from across Western Canada, with open arms, to this opportunity for progress and healing.”

The visit, drawing on the theme of “Walking Together”, will include a combination of public and private events, with an emphasis on Indigenous participation throughout the visit. Ticketing (free) for public events will be announced in the coming days. 

Those interested in learning more about the Papal Visit to Canada can find the latest updates at: www.papalvisit.ca (English) and www.visitepapale.ca (French).

 

Highlights of the program announced by the Vatican include:

July 25, 2022

On July 25th, Pope Francis will visit Maskwacis, home to the former Ermineskin Residential School, one of the largest residential school sites in Canada. The Holy Father will join former residential school students from across the country as part of a formal program. Alberta is home to the largest number of former residential schools in Canada.

Later in the day, the pontiff will visit Sacred Heart Church of the First Peoples, a National Indigenous church in downtown Edmonton. This will be an invitation-only event.

July 26, 2022

July 26th is the feast of St. Anne, a day of particular reverence for Indigenous Catholics and often the focus of pilgrimage in various parts of the country. In an event that will be open to the public, the Holy Father will celebrate an open-air Mass at Commonwealth Stadium in Edmonton. The facility can accommodate up to 65,000 attendees for a program that will incorporate Indigenous traditions as part of the gathering.

In the early evening, Pope Francis will travel to Lac Ste. Anne, the site of an annual pilgrimage that welcomes tens of thousands of Indigenous participants from throughout Canada and the United States each year. Programming will be offered throughout the day leading up to the Holy Father’s participation in a prayer service.

Further stops on the Pope's journey include a visit to Quebec City and Sainte-Anne-de-Beaupre in Quebec, and a final stop in Iqaluit.

Details on tickets for the Commonwealth Stadium mass will be revealed in coming days. Look to papalvisit.ca for the latest information.