Italpinas Euroasian Design and Eco-development Corporation, an Italian-Filipino joint venture, joins the entire country in welcoming His Holiness Pope Francis on his visit to the Philippines. For the first time in 20 years, the head of the Roman Catholic Church is visiting the Philippines, a country with 100 million people which are predominantly Catholics.
At exactly 5:32pm last January 15, Sri Lankan Airlines A340 plane brought the Pope Francis in the Philippines from Sri Lanka, the first leg of his Asian tour. The plane landed at the Villamor Airbase as bells simultaneously resonated in churches across the country.
The 78-year old Jesuit pontiff waved with all smiles to the excited crowd as they cheered on the runway with their red, white, blue umbrellas forming the Philippine flag.
The highlight of the Pope’s visit in the country is his whole day stopover in Leyte, the province battered last year by Typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan) which affected thousands of Filipinos. He will also have events in Manila Cathedral, University of Santo Tomas (UST), and the Mall of Asia Arena.
For the complete itinerary of the Pope, please see below:
5:45 pm – Arrival in Manila, followed by a motorcade to the Apostolic Nunciature, or the Vatican Embassy, along Taft Avenue
9:15 am – Welcome ceremony in the presidential palace, Malacañang, with a courtesy visit to Philippine President Benigno Aquino III
10:15 am – Meeting with civil authorities and the diplomatic corps, and a speech by Francis; followed by a motorcade to the Manila Cathedral
11:15 am – Holy Mass with bishops, priests, and consecrated persons at the Manila Cathedral; followed by a motorcade to the Mall of Asia Arena, Pasay City
5:30 pm – Meeting with families at the Mall of Asia Arena
8:15 am – Departure for Tacloban City, from the Villamor Air Base
9:30 am – Arrival in Tacloban City
10 am – Concelebrated Mass near the Tacloban airport
12:45 pm – Lunch with several Yolanda survivors at the Archbishop’s Residence in Palo, Leyte
3 pm – Blessing of the Pope Francis Center for the Poor in Palo, Leyte
3:30 pm – Meeting with priests, consecrated persons, seminarians, and families of Yolanda survivors at the Palo Cathedral
5 pm – Departure for Manila
6:15 pm – Arrival in Manila, at the Villamor Air Base
9:45 am – Meeting with leaders of various religions at UST in Manila
10:30 am – Meeting with the youth in the sports field of UST, and a speech by Francis; followed by a motorcade to Rizal Park
3:30 pm – Concluding Mass at Rizal Park, Manila
9:45 am – Departure ceremony at the presidential pavilion of the Villamor Air Base
10 am – Departure for Rome
More photos of the Pope in the Philippines below: