Scotland was the first stop on Pope Benedict XVI's historic Papal Visit to the United Kingdom. The cities of Edinburgh and Glasgow hosted the main events.
Pope Benedict XVI started the day by speaking to the media flying with him from Rome to Edinburgh on Thursday, 16 September 2010. The first stop on his historic Papal Visit to the United Kingdom was the Palace of Holyroodhouse where he was greeted by HRH Queen Elizabeth II at her official residence in Scotland. Having enjoyed the official State welcome, Benedict then traveled through Edinburgh in the Popemobile with thousands of passionate Scots lining the streets. Late afternoon and a move across to Glasgow saw the celebration of Mass with a crowd of over 70,000 in the city’s Bellahouston Park – a place where his successor John Paul II had celebrated Mass when he visited Scotland in 1982.
As is traditional at the start of Apostolic Journeys, Pope Benedict XVI held a mid-flight press conference with journalists accompanying him on his four-day visit to the United Kingdom. Here's a Vatican Media translation of the question and answer session.
"Your Holiness, your presence here today reminds us of our common Christian heritage, and of the Christian contribution to the encouragement of world peace, and to the economic and social development of the less prosperous countries of the world."
"The monarchs of England and Scotland have been Christians from very early times and include outstanding saints like Edward the Confessor and Margaret of Scotland."