Lagan Valley MLA Trevor Lunn has welcomed the news that Pope Francis is planning to visit Ireland in 2018.
The Alliance Party representative said he’s hopeful that the Papal visit will include Northern Ireland.
“The announcement about the visit of Pope Francis to Ireland is to be warmly welcomed as it has the potential to help build bridges between communities, and I am hopeful the visit will include Northern Ireland,” he commented.
“Unfortunately, at the time of the visit of Pope John Paul II, the situation in Northern Ireland prevented him from coming north, but we are in a much better place now.
“The main purpose of this visit will be for the World Meeting of Families and it will be a natural extension of the visit for Pope Francis to come north, where I believe families from every community will come out to welcome him,” Mr Lunn added.