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Pope Francis to Take 8-Week Break in Liturgical Schedule this Summer

Pope Francis is slowing down his liturgical schedule this summer as he prepares for the longest international trip of his pontificate in September.

Summer Break in Public Liturgies

The 87-year-old Pope does not have any public Masses on his schedule for eight weeks in July and August, according to the master of papal liturgical ceremonies’ official schedule. The Pope’s current calendar has him taking a break from public liturgies from July 8 to September 1. Prior to that, he is expected to preside over at least three events on his liturgical schedule.

Throughout his pontificate, Pope Francis has opted for a busier summer schedule than his predecessors, making international trips, creating new cardinals, establishing new Church celebrations, and famously forgoing the traditional summer retreat to the papal residence in Castel Gandolfo. Yet Pope Francis has continued the tradition of taking the month of July off from his public audiences, with the exception of the Sunday Angelus, something that in recent years has given him the chance to recover from medical surgeries in June 2023 and July 2021.

Upcoming Travel Plans

Pope Francis has yet to make any international trips so far in 2024, but he has two on his schedule in the fall — including an ambitious two-week tour of Southeast Asia and Oceania with stops in Indonesia, Papua New Guinea, East Timor, and Singapore.

Pope Francis presided over Mass for the Solemnity of Saints Peter and Paul, the co-patrons of the city of Rome, in St. Peter’s Basilica on June 29. On July 1, Pope Francis convened a Consistory of Cardinals concerning the upcoming canonization of new saints.

The Vatican has revealed that the Pope will also make another pastoral visit within Italy before taking a bit of a break from travel. This time the Pope will travel to the northern Italian city of Trieste for a day trip on July 7.

The pope also participated in the G7 Summit in June to speak about the ethics of artificial intelligence.

Angelus Prayers Continue

Pope Francis will not hold his usual Wednesday audiences in St. Peter’s Square throughout the month of July, but visitors to Rome hoping to catch a glimpse of the pope will still be able to spot him each Sunday at noon as he appears in the window of the Apostolic Palace for the Angelus prayer.

Adapted by Jacob Stein

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Courtney Mares is a Rome Correspondent for Catholic News Agency. A graduate of Harvard University, she has reported from news bureaus on three continents and was awarded the Gardner Fellowship for her work with North Korean refugees.

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