Pope Benedict travels to his summer residence at Castel Gandolfo


Castelgandolfo, Jul 23, 2008 / 08:15 pm (CNA).- Having returned from his visit to Australia for World Youth Day, Pope Benedict XVI has moved to his summer residence at Castel Gandolfo. After three days of rest, he will meet with Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri Al-Maliki on Friday and travel to the northern Italian town of Bressanone the following day.

In Bressanone, a German-speaking town near the Italian border with Germany, the Pope will stay with his brother Father Georg Ratzinger in a medieval seminary from July 28 to August 11. According to ANSA news agency, a grand piano has been installed at the seminary for the two music-loving brothers.

Pope Benedict will also spend time with Milly, the seminary's cat, who will be cared for by Sister Superior Maria Pieta. Besides Sister Pieta, only rector Ivo Muser will remain at the seminary during the Pope's visit.

According to the local diocese, Pope Benedict will stay in an apartment decorated in "extremely sober" style and read, play music, and enjoy strolls in the mountains.

He is scheduled to deliver his customary Sunday Angelus from the town square on August 3 and August 10. Bressanone Mayor Alberto Puergstaller will reportedly grant the Pope honorary citizenship on August 9.

The Pope first visited the town with his brother and older sister Maria in 1970 and spent time at the seminary while he was a cardinal.
After his Bressanone visit, Pope Benedict will return to Castel Gandolfo where he will resume regular general audiences. On Friday, August 15 he will hold Mass at the local parish.

He will reportedly remain at Castel Gandolfo through late September, excepting a visit to France from September 12 through 15.