Pope Benedict To Make History With Trip To Britain

09.13.10 | FL News Team

(Vatican City)  --  Pope Benedict later this week will become only the second pope in history to visit Britain.  Benedict will be welcomed with mixed emotions, some of them even hostile.  His visit comes after a sexual abuse scandal involving children with priests in several European countries.  If that wasn't enough, relations with Anglicans are strained and many have voiced concerns over the taxpayers footing some of the trip's bill.  Benedict's four day visit starts on Thursday.  Vatican organizers say he was invited to Britain by Queen Elizabeth as the head of state.

Benedict is only the second pope to visit Britain since 1534.  That's when King Henry VIII separated the Church of England from the Roman Catholic Church because the Vatican refused to annul his marriage to Catherine of Aragon.  Still to this day, any member of Britain's royal family who marries a Catholic has to give up their right to the throne.