Cardinal Schönborn to start US visit

Vienna Archbishop Christoph Cardinal Schönborn is to start a six-day trip to the USA tomorrow (Sat).The archdiocese press service said he will give speeches and meet with politicians, economists and scientists in Kansas City, New York and Washington, D.C.His first stop will be Kansas City, Missouri, where he will visit various Church institutions at the invitation of local Archbishop Joseph F. Naumann and the Benedictine College in nearby Atchison, Kansas.He will give a speech at the college on the afternoon of 31 January in which he will address the main issues in the Church during the past few years and meet with priests from Kansas, Missouri and Nebraska in the evening.He will also be awarded the Cross of the Order of St. Benedict Award.The Cardinal will also meet with members of the Society of the Lamb, a religious order founded in the 1980s in Carcassone Diocese in France and which he is responsible for in the Catholic Church. There is a branch of the Society in Vienna-Leopoldstadt.The Cardinal will also take part in a Mass on 2 February at St. Patrick’s Cathedral in New York and another on 4 February at St. Matthew’s Cathedral in Washington, D.C.He will give a speech at Catholic University in the US capital on 3 February on the subject “Christianity – Alien Presence or Foundation of the West.”Schönborn will meet with State Department officials on 4 February to discuss the plight of Iraqi Christians, both the few still in Iraq and those who are refugees in neighbouring countries and have little chance or returning home.