VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- Pope Francis said he would travel to
Bangladesh to proclaim the Gospel message of "reconciliation, forgiveness
and peace," and he said he was especially looking forward to a meeting
with the nation's religious leaders.
"We are living at a time when religious believers and
people of goodwill everywhere are called to foster mutual understanding and
respect and to support each other as members of our one human family," the
pope said in a video message to the people of Bangladesh.
"I especially look forward to meeting religious
leaders," he said in the video, which was released at the Vatican Nov. 21.
Pope Francis is scheduled to leave Rome Nov. 26 for a visit
to Myanmar Nov. 27-30
and Bangladesh Nov. 30-Dec. 2.
What the Vatican described as an "interreligious and ecumenical meeting
for peace" is scheduled for Dec. 1 in the garden of the archbishop's
residence in Dhaka's Ramna
The vast majority -- some 90 percent -- of Bangladesh's
people are Muslim. The largest minority group is made up of Hindus. Christians
are about 1 percent of the population. The ecumenical National Council of
Churches in Bangladesh includes 13 Christian denominations; although the
Catholic Church is not a member, it has a strong working relationship with the