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A look back at papal trips.
BY The Editors
Here, we offer a pictorial travelogue (PDF) of the well-traveled Pope.
In 2005, the freshly minted Pope traveled to Munich, Germany, in August for World Youth Day. In May 2006, he visited Poland, the homeland of his predecessor and friend Pope John Paul II. He also went to Spain (July), Germany (September) and Turkey (November).
In May 2007, Benedict visited Brazil, principally to address the Latin American Bishops’ Conference at their meeting in Aparecida. He also visited Austria in September. In July 2008, the Holy Father visited Sydney, Australia, for his second World Youth Day celebration. His September visit to France was highlighted by a pilgrimage to Lourdes, the most visited Marian shrine in the world.
The Pope showed no signs of slowing down in 2009, when his travels took him to Cameroon and Angola in March; Jordan, Israel and the Palestinian Territories in May and the Czech Republic in September. In Jerusalem, he prayed in the Church of the Holy Sepulcher and at the Wailing Wall.
The year 2010 was another momentous year for the Holy Father, highlighted by his memorable state visit in September to the United Kingdom, the first such visit to that country by a pope. The trip was sandwiched between voyages to Malta in April, Portugal in May, when he visited the Shrine of Our Lady of Fatima, Cyprus in June and Spain in November.
In 2011, Pope Benedict voyaged to Croatia and San Marino in June, attended his third World Youth Day in Madrid in August, made his third trip to Germany in September and went on to Benin in west Africa in November.
In 2012, the Pope’s year was noted for his seven-day trip to Mexico and Cuba. He also visited Lebanon in September, to promulgate his post-synodal apostolic exhortation following the 2010 Synod of Bishops on the Middle East.
In the Holy Father’s nearly eight-year papacy, he made 24 trips outside the Vatican, not counting his numerous trips within Italy or his historic 2008 visit to the United States. Not bad for a man who ascended the chair of Peter at the age of 78.