Pope Francis, Anticipating His Assisi Visit
Assisi is in euphoria over the arrival here of Pope Francis on October 4th for la Festa di San Francesco.
Hotels have been sold out for months and the Assisians’ anticipation is palpable.
We’re not yet sure about the day’s itinerary but Umbrian newspapers – and national ones – drop tidbits of enticing speculation now and then.
We know that Papa Francesco has responded “si” to the invitation of all at the Istituto Serafico – housing over one hundred severely-handicapped children and youth – to drop in for a visit.
One young girl announced that she must finish her drawings for the Pope “who is coming soon to our house!”
Pope Francis wishes to come by train and hopes to pray before the Crucifix said to have spoken to Francesco in 1204 (now in the Basilica di Santa Chiara), visit the Hermitage on Mt. Subasio (15th-century monastery built over the site of the caves where Francesco withdrew for prayer) and stop at the 16h c Basilica di Santa Maria degli Angeli, built over the site of the Saint’s death, Oct 3, 1226. And then there is the stop at the Serafico.
Certamente, Pope Francis will pray at the Tomb of St. Francis in the Basilica di San Francesco. And we’ll all be waiting for him lean out of the Basilica’s Papal loggia to bless all with the reliquary holding the prayer written by Francesco for his follower, Frate Leone. The relic is taken out of the Basilica di San Francesco only once a year: on October 4th, when traditionally, a cardinal representing the Pope blesses the crowds with the sacred relic at the end of the day’s celebrations.
A full-day – even for a very determined Pope. And if he comes by car from Rome, the trip will be over two hours.
Makes me wonder if he might stay overnight in the Papal apartment inside the 15th- c Franciscan monastery adjacent to the Basilica….?
Here, all anticipate his visit and I’m sure the Pope, too, is looking forward to his time in Assisi. Photographer Andrea Angelucci’s stunning photograph of Assisi – a gift to Pope Francis, presented to him by the bishops of Umbria on their visit to Rome in April – certainly must have him counting the days until October 4th!
Click here to read more about Assisi photographer, Andrea Angelucci
Read about Assisi’s celebrations for the Feast of St. Francis
Read about Assisi’s excitement over the election of Pope Francis
Read more about Pope Francis and Assisi
Click here to read about the October 5th feast-day celebrations
Assisi photos by Andrea Angelucci (www.angelucci.com):