VATICAN CITY, JUNE 7, 2004 ( John Paul II's visit to Switzerland this past weekend proved his capacity to continue to travel despite his physical limitations.

Now it is expected that the Pope's next trip (Aug. 14-15) will be to Lourdes, France, to celebrate the 150th anniversary of the proclamation of the dogma of the Immaculate Conception.

This visit is yet to be confirmed officially by the Holy See. But representatives of the French government as well as those of the Catholic Church in the country have revealed that preparations are under way. It will be announced closer to the date, depending on John Paul II's state of health.

A few weeks ago, the Pope himself announced publicly his intention to travel Sept. 5 to the Marian shrine of Loreto, Italy, to beatify politician and engineer Alberto Marvelli (1918-1946).

A possible papal trip in October to Guadalajara, Mexico, for the International Eucharistic Congress remains undecided.


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