Philadelphia Archbishop Chaput Wants You to Open Up Your Home to Papal Visitors

The leader of Philadelphia’s Catholics is urging his flock to show some brotherly love during Pope Francis’ visit to the city.

In his weekly address, Philadelphia Archbishop Charles Chaput asked Catholics, and non-Christians alike, to open their homes for September’s World Meeting of Families.

“I’m asking Catholics and other generous people across the archdiocese to please consider opening your homes to offer lodging to visitors via the ‘Host a Family Program,’ said Chaput. “Anyone with a furnished guest bedroom, apartment or home (including vacation homes) within 120 miles of Center City Philadelphia is encouraged to take part.”

The World Meeting of Families is expected to draw thousands to Philadelphia from Sept. 22 to Sept. 27. The number of visitors is expected to swell from thousands to possibly millions as the Pope spends the last weekend of September in Philadelphia — even holding a public mass on the Ben Franklin Parkway.

Hotel rooms are booked for miles around so Chaput asked interested hosts to visit to sign up for the HomeStay program.

“You’ll be asked to create a ‘Host a Family’ profile and include a description about yourself and your home, including the number of bedrooms available for guests, distance to Center City Philadelphia, photos, household rules and any other relevant information about your home or community.”

So far, only around 600 families have signed up for the program, said an archdiocese spokeswoman.

People aren't being asked to open their homes for free as the program also for fees.

Chaput closed his weekly address by counting the church’s blessings supplied by the generosity of donors from all sorts of backgrounds and faiths ahead of the World Meeting.

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