VATICAN CITY – Pope Francis’ weeklong visit to Chile and Peru in January is expected to include a focus on issues affecting indigenous people.
The Vatican on Monday released the itinerary for the Jan. 15-22 trip, which will be the pope’s 21st foreign visit and his fifth to his home continent.
The schedule includes a day devoted to the Amazon as well as a visit to a southern Chilean region claimed by the indigenous Mapuche community.
The trip also is likely to cover other issues important to Francis – poverty, migration and the environment. And it will feature protocol visits, speeches to bishops and meetings with local Jesuits.
It also could create tension. Vandals burned a bus and scattered pamphlets last week to protest Francis’ Jan. 17 visit to the region claimed by the Mapuche as ancestral territory.