Pope to focus on fate of Christians in Middle East on July 7

Pope Francis arrives for his weekly general audience, in St.Peter's Square at the Vatican, Wednesday, April 25, 2018. The pontiff blessed and prayed with the faithful for a highly-anticipated summit between the leaders of North and South Korea next Friday over the North's nuclear crisis. (AP Photo/Andrew Medichini)
Pope Francis is presented a teddy bear, the mascot of an Austrian Police band, during his weekly general audience, at the Vatican, Wednesday, April 25, 2018. Pope Francis has hailed a "two Koreas" summit this week on the Korean Peninsula as an opportunity to start dialogue, and urged those involved to "have the courage" to be "artisans of peace." (AP Photo/Andrew Medichini)
Pope Francis poses with clergy boys and girls during for his weekly general audience, at the Vatican, Wednesday, April 25, 2018. Pope Francis has hailed a "two Koreas" summit this week on the Korean Peninsula as an opportunity to start dialogue, and urged those involved to "have the courage" to be "artisans of peace." (AP Photo/Andrew Medichini)

VATICAN CITY — The Vatican says Pope Francis is planning to invite heads of churches and Christian communities from the Middle East to join him in a day of reflection and prayer in the southeastern Italian port city of Bari on July 7.

The announcement on Wednesday said Francis has called for this "ecumenical encounter for peace" in view of the "dramatic situation" facing many Christians in the Middle East.

The pope has frequently decried violence targeting Christians in parts of the Middle East, many of whom have fled their homelands to seek safety.

St. Nicholas Basilica in Bari, an Adriatic port city, is a popular pilgrimage destination for both Catholics and Orthodox Christians.

The Vatican said Francis is calling for prayers to help prepare for the daylong event.

You may also interested in

Samba, reflections and pride in final Rio Olympics party

Aug 22, 2016

Shaking to samba and sharing reflections in uniquely Brazilian words, Olympians and fans said goodbye to the Rio Games with one last big bash that was both revelatory and a sigh of relief

Tokyo prepares for 2020, facing rising costs and new sports

Aug 22, 2016

Tokyo's up as the next Summer Olympics host city, facing rising costs and 5 new sports

US, Turkey at an impasse over extraditing Muslim cleric

Aug 26, 2016

Turkey says the United States is legally bound by a treaty to immediately hand over Fethullah Gulen (FEH'-too-lah goo-LEN'), the U.S.-based Muslim cleric accused of plotting to overthrow Turkey's government

Syok Asia welcomes the generations to witness the beautiful world of art and creativity in Malaysia and the rest of the world.

Contact us: sales@syokasia.com