POPE FRANCIS BEGINS HIS APOSTOLIC JOURNEY TO KAZAKHSTAN – A FUTURISTIC NUR-SULTAN READY TO WELCOME POPE FRANCIS TO KAZAKHSTAN – POPE’S PRESENCE IN KAZAKHSTAN TO HELP ‘MAP WAY OUT OF CONFLICTS’

I am following Pope Francis’ trip to Kazakhstan as many of you are – on television and online for news reports. Television brings the living, colorful, in-the-moment images, as I know you have seen today and will for the next two days. Below are three stories from Vatican news about the papal trip to Kazakhstan, including video, photos and commentary.

A preview of the trip was given last night on EWTN News Nightly by EWTN’s Alexey Gotovsky of our Rome office: EWTN News | News from a true Catholic perspective

POPE FRANCIS BEGINS HIS APOSTOLIC JOURNEY TO KAZAKHSTAN

Pope Francis departs from Rome’s Fiumicino airport aboard the papal plane bound for Nur-Sultan, as he begins his Apostolic Journey to Kazakhstan.

By Devin Watkins (vaticannews)

The papal plane took off from Rome’s Fiumicino airport on Tuesday at 7:36 AM with Pope Francis aboard, along with a compliment of around 80 journalists in the papal entourage.

The Pope’s 38th Apostolic Journey abroad takes him to the Nur-Sultan, the capital of Kazakhstan, where he is expected to arrive at around 5:45 PM local time (GMT+6) after a roughly 6.5-hour flight.

His first official visit comes soon afterwards on Tuesday as he makes a courtesy visit to President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev, before meeting with the country’s authorities, civil servants, and diplomatic corps. FOR MORE: Pope Francis begins his Apostolic Journey to Kazakhstan – Vatican News

A FUTURISTIC NUR-SULTAN READY TO WELCOME POPE FRANCIS TO KAZAKHSTAN

As Pope Francis prepares to depart for Kazakhstan on Tuesday, our correspondent in Nur-Sultan takes a look at his upcoming participation in the 7th Congress of Leaders of World and Traditional Religions, as well as the small Catholic community’s great joy to receive the Holy Father.

By Deborah Castellano Lubov – Nur-Sultan (vaticannews)

Catholics and non-Catholics alike in the immense Central Asian nation of Kazakhstan are preparing and looking forward to welcoming Pope Francis to their country on Tuesday.

Pope Francis will embark on his 38th Apostolic Visit abroad, marking his 57th country visited and his fourth Apostolic Journey since the beginning of the year.

Working day and night

“They have been working day and night,” Fr. Pawel, a Franciscan priest, told Vatican News during a visit to the pavilion where the Holy Father’s Mass will be held for the nation’s Catholics, though not only Catholics will be present.

According to the rector of the Cathedral where the Pope will meet bishops, clergy, religious, and those pursuing vocations on Thursday, not only the Catholics are greatly anticipating the Mass, but even Kazakhs of other faiths.

To some non-Catholics, Pope Francis is like a father

He says even some Muslims will be there. “When I inquired as to their reasoning or interesting in being present, they said to me ‘Pope is Papa.’ He is also like a father to us.” FOR MORE: A futuristic Nur-Sultan ready to welcome Pope Francis to Kazakhstan – Vatican News

POPE’S PRESENCE IN KAZAKHSTAN TO HELP ‘MAP WAY OUT OF CONFLICTS’

As Pope Francis prepares to take part in an interfaith congress in Kazakhstan, Professor Azza Karam, Secretary General of Religions for Peace, says the Pope can help religious leaders map out ways of resolving and avoiding conflicts.

By Devin Watkins (vaticannews)

“Pope Francis is a faith leader whom many others, even outside the Catholic community, tend to listen to and respect very highly.”

The Secretary General of Religions for Peace, Prof. Azza Karam, offered that insight into the Pope’s footprint in interreligious dialogue.

Prof. Karam spoke to Vatican News ahead of Pope Francis’ Apostolic Journey to Kazakhstan, on 13-15 September, which will see him participate in the 7th Congress of Leaders of World and Traditional Religions in Nur-Sultan.

Nearly 100 delegations are expected to attend from 60 nations, representing Christianity, Islam, Judaism, Shintoism, Buddhism, Zoroastrianism, Hinduism, and other religions.

Pope a ‘spokesperson for peace’

Pope Francis will join religious leaders in seeking to plot a course for humanity’s renewal in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic, amidst numerous wars and conflicts across the globe.”Pope Francis has positioned himself by virtue of his speech and what he symbolizes to be, in some respects, the spokesperson of what peace should look like in people’s ordinary lives, but also on the level of government.” FOR MORE: Pope’s presence in Kazakhstan to help ‘map way out of conflicts’ – Vatican News