Pope confirms he will visit Britain
Pope Benedict XVI has confirmed reports that he will visit Britain.
The Pontiff told the Catholic bishops of England and Wales in an address marking the end of their pilgrimage to Rome that he would be making his first apostolic visit to Britain.
No dates or schedule were given but his remarks come after it was widely reported last year that he will visit Britain this September.
In a speech to the bishops, the Pope spoke of the "living faith and devotion" among Catholics in England and Wales, highlighting the recent visit of the relics of St Therese and the forthcoming beatification of Cardinal John Henry Newman.
"On the occasion of my forthcoming apostolic visit to Great Britain, I shall be able to witness that faith for myself and, as successor of Peter, to strengthen and confirm it," he told the bishops.
"During the months of preparation that lie ahead, be sure to encourage the Catholics of England and Wales in their devotion, and assure them that the Pope constantly remembers them in his prayers and holds them in his heart."