Updated: 28/11/16 : 08:28:33
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Taoiseach to meet with Pope today in Vatican City

The Taoiseach will meet Pope Francis in the Vatican today.

Enda Kenny is expected to discuss the Church's World Meeting of Families planned for August 2018, which will include a papal visit.

The Taoiseach will formally invite Pope Francis to Ireland for 2018.

There is speculation he could encourage Pope Francis to extend his itinerary to include parts of the country outside Dublin, as well as Northern Ireland.

Pope Francis will receive them in the papal library, at the Apostolic Palace, beside St Peter’s Square.

The Pope’s visit to Ireland for 2018 is at the request of the Conference of Irish Bishops.

Mr Kenny is expected to convey to the Pope that “the normal state courtesies and support will be extended to him” when he comes to Ireland.

It is five years since Mr Kenny made a speech in the Dáil which was highly critical of the Church's handling of the clerical sex abuse crisis.

Mr Kenny and Pope Francis are also expected to discuss bilateral relations between the two states, developments in the European Union, and migration.