Pope Francis Says He Will Visit Philly

Official confirmation is expected six months ahead of the World Meeting of Families, which will take place in September 2015

The Pope himself said he is likely coming to the City of Brotherly Love.

NBC News correspondent Anne Thompson told the "Today" show Thursday that she spoke to Pope Francis during his recent flight to South Korea.

Thompson said she asked His Holiness in Italian if he would be attending the World Meeting of Families in Philadelphia next year.

“He said 'yes,' and he mentioned World Family Day,” said Thompson.

2015 World Meeting Of Families Philadelphia

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The Vatican has yet to officially confirm a papal visit to the United State but all signs point to it being likely that he will visit Philly. In the past months, a group of Philadelphia representatives went to Rome and a contingency from the Vatican visited Philly as the Catholic Church prepares for the event.

Normal policy keeps the Vatican from making anything official at this time, according to the Philadelphia Archdiocese.

"We still expect that any official confirmation will come approximately six months prior to the event and we remain confident that the Holy Father will be present with us," said archdiocesan spokesman Kenneth Gavin. "This confidence is based on Archbishop Chaput’s personal conversations with Pope Francis and previous comments by the Vatican Press Office regarding Pope Francis’ 'willingness to participate in the World Meeting of Families.'"

Pope Francis also has kept his word about travel desires. During a visit to South America he stated that he wanted to go to Asia. He is currently in Korea and has upcoming travel plans to Sri Lanka and the Philippines.

The World Meeting of Families will take place Sept. 22 to 27, 2015.

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