Pope to End Vacation, Bid Farewell to Youth

Benedict XVI to Become Honorary Citizen of Introd

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INTROD, Italy, JULY 28, 2009 (Zenit.org).- Benedict XVI will bid farewell to the Italian Alps on Wednesday, ending his annual vacation with a meeting with Salesian youth.



The Pope will receive these young people as a sign of his appreciation for the welcome offered him in the Salesian residence of Les Combes of Introd. He has been staying there since arriving July 13 to northern Italy.

According to Father Federico Lombardi, director of the Vatican press office, the Holy Father will also express his gratitude to the authorities of the region and the people of Introd, the police force, military personnel, civil security, firefighters and all those who collaborated in ensuring a restful stay.

He will also "bid farewell to the children and residents of Les Combes," Father Lombardi added in declarations today.

In addition, the spokesman reported that Introd's city council has "decided to offer the Holy Father honorary citizenship." This is to be followed by an official response detailing the Holy Father's acceptance of the honor. And in upcoming months, a "delegation will go to Rome for the official conveying."

More details

Father Lombardi also revealed to the Italian satellite TV station SkyTG24 details about the July 17 fall that led to the Holy Father fracturing his right wrist.

"The Pope got up in the night in a room that he is not accustomed to -- different than his room in Rome -- and in the dark, he looked for the light switch. He tripped over one of the legs of the bed, fell and injured his wrist," the spokesman explained.

The Holy Father didn't call for help in that moment, Father Lombardi added. "Later, the next morning, he saw that his wrist was swollen and it was still hurting."

Nevertheless, he wanted to celebrate Mass, he had breakfast and afterward, at about 9 in the morning, he was taken to the hospital in Aosta, where he had surgery to repair the fracture.

When the Pontiff arrives to Rome on Wednesday, he will go directly to Castel Gandolfo, where he will spend the rest of the summer.