Pope Francis joins leaders of the assembly of the Synod of Bishops for prayer before a working session in the Vatican's Paul VI Audience Hall Oct. 17, 2023. CNS photo/Lola Gomez

Pope Francis mentions planned Argentina trip, hints at Oceania tour

By  Justin McLellan, Catholic News Service
  • October 17, 2023

VATICAN CITY -- Pope Francis said a trip to his native Argentina remains on his schedule and that he has been encouraged to travel through Oceania.

Asked by an Argentine reporter what important trips remain pending in his pontificate, the pope said "I would like to go" to Argentina in an interview released Oct. 16. "Talking a bit farther away, Papua New Guinea is still left."

He added that someone had told him, "Since I'm going to Argentina, to have a layover in Río Gallegos (Argentina), then the South Pole, land in Melbourne and visit New Zealand and Australia."

"It would be a bit long," the 86-year-old pope said.

In the wide-spanning interview recorded in September with the Argentine state news agency Télam, Pope Francis said that while he receives many invitations to visit countries and there is a list of possible papal trips, ideas for trips also originate from the Vatican, such as his Aug. 31-Sept. 4 trip to Mongolia.

Pope Francis also spoke about the synod on synodality, relating it to the vision of St. John XXIII at the start of the Second Vatican Council. "It is not only about changing style, it is about a change of growth in favor of people's dignity," he said.

Please support The Catholic Register

Unlike many media companies, The Catholic Register has never charged readers for access to the news and information on our website. We want to keep our award-winning journalism as widely available as possible. But we need your help.

For more than 125 years, The Register has been a trusted source of faith-based journalism. By making even a small donation you help ensure our future as an important voice in the Catholic Church. If you support the mission of Catholic journalism, please donate today. Thank you.