This just in from the Vancouver Sun:
Pope Benedict won’t attend Quebec’s 400th celebrations
Canwest News Service
Thursday, January 17, 2008
QUEBEC – Pope Benedict XVI will not come to Quebec City this summer for the 400th anniversary celebrations, the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Quebec said Thursday.
Marc Cardinal Ouellet, archbishop of Quebec and primate of the church in Canada, has been lobbying for weeks for the pontiff to attend the International Eucharistic Congress slated for June, one of the biggest events of the city’s 400th birthday bash.
But Ouellet said in a brief press release that the Pope has chosen to send a representative to the congress that will bring together some 15,000 delegates and 50 cardinals from 60 countries.
A group of Quebec citizens had also launched a petition to encourage the Pope to attend the event that will culminate with a giant outdoor mass on the historic Plains of Abraham.
However, I understand the desire of the 80 year old Pontiff to be prudent.
I would like to have seen Pope Benedict XVI place Card. Ouellet, whom I know a little, more in the world spotlight.
I wonder if part of the reason that the Holy Father might not be going is that there is a new head of the Holy See’s office for Eucharistic Congresses, and that that new head might have something to say about the Mass in Quebec?