In response to Pope Francis’ announcement that he plans to attend the September 2015 World Meeting of Families, Bishop Dennis Sullivan expressed joy that the Holy Father intends to visit Philadelphia.
“Our Holy Father, Pope Francis, has captured the minds and hearts of the world from the moment he stepped out on the balcony of the Basilica of St. Peter following his election,” said Bishop Sullivan. “What a great blessing it is, then, that he intends to visit Philadelphia next year for the World Meeting of Families, his first visit to the United States of America.
“As the Vicar General for the Archdiocese of New York during the 2008 Apostolic Visit of Pope-Emeritus Benedict XVI, I saw firsthand the excitement of the faithful to welcome the Successor of St. Peter and the graces such a visit bestows on the local church. I am delighted for the faithful of the Diocese of Camden, who will be able to experience the presence of the Holy Father right in our backyard, something that has not happened since Pope St. John Paul II’s visit in 1979.
“I am confident that Pope Francis’ time among us will provide many graces for the faithful of the Diocese of Camden and for all women and men of good will. I pray that his presence will strengthen Catholic families in their vocation to be leaven and light in the world.”
The Diocese of Camden will use the coming months to prepare the faithful for the World Meeting of Families, which is sponsored by the Vatican’s Pontifical Council for the Family. These preparations will include reflection and study on the important role the family plays in the church and in society.