UCAN needs your support
You are why we do what we do - report, describe, comment, review. It is to bring to your eyes just what life is like for believers across Asia that we publish UCAN.
But as you know, the effort needs to be sustained if it is to have continuing effect.
UCAN publishes some 150 stories a week in four languages across six websites. We are grateful to benefactors in Europe and the US who support us. But those countries and the Church there are under increasing financial strain and their generosity no longer covers our costs.
We need financial help from our readers to sustain our efforts. Our reporters, editors, video producers and photographers all have families and we need to support them. They do excellent jobs, but they can't do their jobs for nothing.
Will you help us to sustain UCAN? Please click here to help.
Thanks in anticipation.
Fr. Michael Kelly SJ
Pope Francis begins his journey to Asia
The pontiff is scheduled to arrive in Seoul on Thursday morning
Pope Francis departed Rome at 4pm local time bound for Seoul, Korea. (Photo by Matteo Volpone/Shutterstock.com)
- Steve Finch, Rome
- August 13, 2014
Pope Francis set off from Rome on Wednesday afternoon at the start of a landmark trip to South Korea, the first by a pope to Asia this millennium.
The pope took his white helicopter from the Vatican heading southwest across the Italian capital to Rome’s Fiumicino Airport shortly before special Alitalia flight AZ 4000 took off at 4pm local time.
The more than 10-hour flight is to travel over Eastern Europe ahead of the long journey across Russia and Mongolia before it was due to enter Chinese airspace early on Thursday morning, a first for a papal flight. According to protocol, the pope was expected to radio a message to China during the over-flight.
The pontiff was scheduled to land at Seoul’s military air base at 10:30am local time on Thursday ahead of a meeting with South Korean President Park Geun-hye.
The five-day visit to South Korea is the first by a pope to East Asia since John Paul II went to India in November 1999, where he launched a new pastoral guidebook for Asia that called for greater evangelization in the region.