POPE VISITED CHURCH OF THE PRIMACY OF PETER

Vatican City, 25 (NE) In the frame of his fifth day of pilgrimage to Holy Land, Pope John Paul II visited yesterday Tabgha on the northwest shore of the Sea of Galilee. There the Holy Father visited the church of the Multiplication of the Loaves. According to tradition, the rock upon which Jesus placed the bread later became the altar of a church. The remains of this church, which was constructed in 350 A.D., lie to the right of the modern-day church which is entrusted to the care of Benedictine fathers.

The Pope then visited the church of the Primacy of Peter, which was reconstructed in 1933 by the Franciscan Custody of the Holy Land. The church recalls the place of St. Peter's triple confession after the Resurrection of the Lord and the confirmation of his ministry. From there the Pope traveled to Capernaum, also on the Sea of Galilee, a site from where the Shrine of the House of Peter can be seen. During the day, the Pope met as well Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak.

Meanwhile, it was announced that the area used for the Mass the Holy Father presided at the Mount of Beatitudes in the morning will be transformed into a forest in honor of Pope John Paul II. For this purpose, at the end of the Mass celebrated with over 100,000 youth from the Middle East and around the world, the Pope was presented with the first tree to be planted and
which he blessed.