Students of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia today welcomed Archbishop Vincenzo Paglia, President of the Pontifical Council for the Family, to Philadelphia and officially invited Pope Francis to attend the World Meeting of Families – Philadelphia 2015. Archbishop Paglia visited Roman Catholic High School during his last day in Philadelphia and was greeted by the students of both Roman Catholic and John W. Hallahan Catholic Girls’ High School on behalf of all Archdiocesan high school students.
Mayor Michael A. Nutter joined Archbishop Paglia’s school visit which comes just one day after the announcement of the World Meeting of Families 2015 theme, “Love is Our Mission: The Family Fully Alive,” and their visit to the Liberty Bell, Independence Hall, Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul, and The Philadelphia Museum of Art. Archbishop Paglia made the trip to Philadelphia to join planning meetings and scout event locations in advance of the World Meeting of Families, which will be held from September 22-27, 2015.
Students from Roman Catholic High School, the oldest all-boys Catholic high school in the United States, and John W. Hallahan Catholic Girls’ High School, the oldest all-girls Diocesan high school in the United States, presented Archbishop Paglia with a special souvenir on behalf of the schools of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia. The Archbishop was gifted a framed custom welcome banner to commemorate his visit to Philadelphia which also serves as an invitation to Pope Francis reading, “The students of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia welcome Archbishop Paglia to Philadelphia and invite Pope Francis to join us for the World Meeting of Families in 2015.”
“Each one of our students is excited about a papal visit during the World Meeting of Families in September 2015,” said Christopher Mominey, Secretary for Catholic Education. “Welcoming Archbishop Paglia to Philadelphia has generated even more excitement for this event – and for the possibility of a visit by Pope Francis to our great city. Philadelphia has an extraordinary legacy of Catholic education and this rich heritage is something we are proud to share with Archbishop Paglia and the Pontifical Council for the Family. We hope that he will return to Rome and share with Pope Francis our great enthusiasm for the World Meeting of Families and our desire to have the pope visit with us.”
Beginning with 1994, The Year of the Family, the Pontifical Council for the Family has been responsible for organizing the World Meetings of Families in Rome (1994); Rio de Janeiro (1997); Rome (2000); Manila (2003); Valencia (2006); Mexico City (2009); Milan (2012); and now, Philadelphia (2015). Since its inception by Saint John Paul II, the World Meeting of Families has sought to strengthen the sacred bonds of family across the globe.
Kenneth A. Gavin
Director of Communications