If Archdiocese invites Pope, govt will endorse it'
Panaji: The BJP-led Goa government Friday said it will endorse invitation to Pope Francis to visit the state during the exposition of relics of St Francis Xavier next year, if Archdiocese of Goa and Daman extends it to the Pope.
The state government cannot extend the invitation on its own as he is a religious head. The invitation has to go from the Archdiocese, BJP Goa unit spokesman Wilfred Mesquita told reporters here today.
The state government will endorse the invitation of the Archdiocese and if Pope agrees to come, the government along with the central government will make preparations to host him here, he said.
"We want the Pope to come. There is no question about it," Mesquita said.
The priests attached to Basilica of Bom Jesus, which houses relics of St Francis Xavier, had shown keen interest in inviting the Pope for the decadal exposition of the patron saint's relics which are housed in the Basilica, located 9 kms away from here.
Earlier, during the ongoing state Legislative Assembly session, BJP legislator Vishnu Wagh had appealed the government to invite Pope for the exposition scheduled next year.