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Pope Francis plans to visit Mexico next year

VATICAN CITY -- The Vatican says Pope Francis is planning to visit Mexico next year.

The Vatican spokesman, the Rev. Federico Lombardi, confirmed Tuesday that plans are underway for the trip and said it would include a visit to the Our Lady of Guadalupe shrine. No dates were announced.

Francis has said previously that he wanted to have entered the U.S. from Mexico in a sign of solidarity with migrants during his recent U.S. trip but that the schedule didn't allow for it.

He said it would have been "a beautiful thing... as a sign of brotherhood and of help to the immigrants."

During his tour of America, Francis spoke about immigrants to his Catholic bishops, "Do not be afraid to welcome them... I am certain that, as so often in the past, these people will enrich America and its church."

Francis had planned to visit his native Argentina as well as Uruguay and Chile next year, but it's not clear if that trip will still take place. The only other trip planned so far in 2016 is to Krakow, Poland, for World Youth Day in July.

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