Great expectations

By
May 22, 2014 11:30

Pope Francis arrives in Israel for a whirlwind tour, amid regional tensions and high hopes.




Pope Francis

Pope Francis greets the faithful as he rides in his Popemobile. (photo credit:REUTERS)

Bishop William Hanna Shomali was a young man when pope Paul VI made the first papal visit to newly independent Israel. In those days, the Old City of Jerusalem was under Jordanian control.

“He came as a pilgrim, and the visit had ecumenical significance to the church because of his meeting with the Greek patriarch.

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