VATICAN CITY, Italy — Montreal mayor Denis Coderre met with Pope Francis at the Vatican Wednesday to personally invite him to attend the city’s 375th anniversary celebrations in 2017.
Coderre said he stressed Montreal’s Catholic heritage in their meeting and how it is still resonates in the city’s institutions and architecture as illustrated by such symbols as the famous cross on Mount Royal.
Coderre also suggested the pope also include Quebec City, if he decides to visit.
The last time a pontiff visited the province was September 1984 when John Paul II drew massive crowds in Montreal, Quebec City, and Rivieres.
One of the highlights of that visit was huge gathering of young people at Olympic Stadium.
The Vatican has not yet indicated if Pope Francis will accept Coderre’s invitation.