Pope Francis: his pilgrimage to Marseille

In 2013, Pope Francis visited the island of Lampedusa. For ten years, he crisscrossed the Mediterranean, passing through Tirana, Sarajevo, Lesbos, Cairo, Jerusalem, Cyprus, Rabat, Naples, Malta, etc. Anxious to encourage this "Mediterranean process" by which the Churches of the Mediterranean express the desire to serve together the unity of the human race in this very special region, Pope Francis has responded to the invitation made by Bishop Jean-Marc Aveline : he will be present in Marseille on September 22 and 23, 2023. The last visit of a pope to Marseille dates back to 1533 with Clement VII!

Here are the key stages of this "Marseilles pilgrimage" of the Pope Francois. A dense program, unveiled on Saturday July 29, in memory of Saints Martha and Mary and Saint Lazarus, patron saints of the diocese of Marseille.

Friday September 22

Pope Francis will arrive at 4:15 p.m. at Marignane airport and will be welcomed by the President of the French Republic, Emmanuel Macron.

Then head to Notre-Dame de la Garde, for a Marian prayer with the diocesan clergy.

Then time of meditation at the stele dedicated to sailors and migrants lost at sea, at 6 p.m., in the presence of representatives of Marseille Espérance. The Pope will speak there.

Saturday September 23

At 8:45 a.m., François will meet in private with some people in economic precariousness at the archdiocese.

At the Palais du Pharo at 10 a.m., participation in the concluding session of the Mediterranean meetings organized this year
in Marseille. The Pope will deliver a speech there.

At 11.30 a.m., he will meet with the French President, still at the Palais du

In the afternoon, at 4:15 p.m., the Pope will preside over mass at the Orange Vélodrome stadium, then he will take his plane back to Rome.

The pope at the Orange Velodrome stadium

Thanks to the mobilization of the Mayor and the City of Marseille, owner of the Orange Vélodrome Stadium, which enabled the coordination of all the actors who have committed themselves to making it possible to hold such an event, State services, OM Operations, and the Organizing Committee of the
Rugby World Cup 2023, mass will take place at the Orange Vélodrome stadium on Saturday September 23. The start of the celebration will be at 3 p.m.

For Cardinal Jean-Marc Aveline, Archbishop of Marseille, "when the Pope celebrates Mass at the Orange Vélodrome stadium, a place that brings together Marseille in all its diversity, it will be as if he were visiting every Marseillais"