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Pope confirms Ireland visit at meeting with EU chief Hogan

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European Commissioner Phil Hogan is greeted by Pope Francis in Rome

European Commissioner Phil Hogan is greeted by Pope Francis in Rome

European Commissioner Phil Hogan is greeted by Pope Francis in Rome

Pope Francis has told Irish EU Commissioner Phil Hogan that he is looking forward to visiting Ireland next year.

The expectation that Pope Francis would come to Ireland in August 2018 for the World Meeting of Families has been talked about for the past year. But it has never been formally confirmed.

Commissioner Hogan met with the Pontiff in Rome at the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations during a series of ceremonies in Rome to mark World Food Day.

"I met the Pope at the FAO headquarters in Rome. It was a short discussion but he confirmed to me that he was coming to Ireland next year and looking forward to it," the Commissioner told the Irish Independent.

Former Taoiseach Enda Kenny spoke of the upcoming papal visit last November and the Archbishop of Dublin Diarmuid Martin has also since referred to it. Pope John Paul II was the first and only Pope to visit Ireland back in 1979.

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