THE POPE plans to perform the first beatifications in Latin America. lunch with steelworkers, visit the ancient Inca capital of Cuzco in Peru, and tour poor shantytowns during a 15,000-mile trip to four countries from January 26 to February 6.
The papal itinerary visits 17 cities in Venezuela, Ecuador, Peru and the island-state of Trinidad and Tobago. It includes trips to seaports, mountain villages and one Amazon jungle town.
The vigorous schedule also will require the Pope to travel several times by aircraft from sea level to attitudes of up to 10,000 feet in the Andes mountains and return to sea level. Such travel is physically exhausting because air pressure is more dense at sea level and the body needs time to adjust to such quick altitude changes. 'The schedule, however, provides little time for rest as the Pope
has planned public events as soon as he arrives at each stop.
The schedule also includes quick changes in climate as the Pope plans to move frequently from hot tropical temperatures to the cool, autumn-like weather of the Andes mountains.
On February I the Pope is scheduled to beatify Ecuadorian Mother Mercedes de Jesus Molina, who lived from 1828 to 1883. The ceremony is planned for Guayaquil. On the following day, the Pope plans to beatify 17th-century Peruvian Sister Ana de los Angeles in the Andean city of Arequipa, Peru.
In oil-rich Venezuela the Pope plans to lunch on January 29 with iron and steelworkers in the tropical town of Ciudad Guayana.
In Ecuador and Peru the Pope plaits several meetings with descendants of the Incas, whose empire ruled most of the Andes region before they were conquered by the Spanish in the 16th century.