The Holy Father, Pope Francis, has just arrived today, shortly after 11 o’clock, in Bucharest, Romania, in a 3-days visit in this mostly Orthodox country holding also a significant catholic minority.
Popa Francis has arrived in „Henri Coandă” International Airport on board a regular Alitalia aircraft and was welcomed by the President Klaus Iohannis and his wife, as well as by the local leaders of the Orthodox, Roman-Catholic and Greek-Catholic churches.
From the airport, the Holy Father has traveled to the center of Bucharest on board a very common low cost local manufactured car, a Dacia Logan.
Two superb examples of modesty the Holy Father gave in his very first minutes spent on Romanian soil.
His first engagement is with Romania’s civil authorities at the Presidential Palace. He also encounters the Permanent Synod of the Romanian Orthodox Church and prays the Our Father with them at the new Orthodox Cathedral (Catedrala Mântuirii Neamului) in Bucharest.
The Pope finishes the day by celebrating Mass for the city’s Catholics at Saint Joseph Cathedral, also in Bucharest.
On Saturday, Pope Francis will fly to the city of Bacău (in the region of Moldavia, that part of Moldavia who remain unoccupied by the Red Army after the War). Then he will take a helicopter to Miercurea Ciuc, in the Transylvania region, to celebrate Mass at the Marian Shrine of Şumuleu Ciuc.
He also will travel to Romania’s second largest city, Iași, also located in Moldavia region.
There he will make a private visit to Our Lady Queen of Iași Cathedral, and hold a Marian encounter with young people and families.
On June 2, Pope Francis will take part in the official beatification of seven Greek-Catholic martyred bishops in the historical city of Blaj (called also The Little Rome), followed by a meeting with members of the local gipsy community.
Then the Holy Father will leave Romania from the Sibiu international airport.