President to visit Vatican next week
Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa is scheduled to visit the Vatican next week to officially invite Pope Francis to visit Sri Lanka.
President Rajapaksa is scheduled to return to the island Sunday after participating at the 69th UN General Assembly held in New York last week.
The Pope is scheduled to arrive in Colombo on January 13th next year. He will visit the island from January 13 – 15.
The government is expected to hold a snap presidential election in the second week of January before the Pope’s visit since according to the Vatican rules the Pope does not visit to countries during election times.
The President has been informed that it is not appropriate for the Pope to visit the country in the middle of an election campaign.
During his maiden visit to Sri Lanka the Pope will meet the President and also will attend a cordial gathering with the clerics of other religions. He will also visit the Madhu Church in Mannar.(Colombo Page)