HAVANA, Cuba — A senior Roman Catholic Church official said Thursday that Pope Benedict XVI will be visiting Communist-run Cuba this spring.

According to Monsignor Jose Felix Perez, executive secretary of the Cuban Bishops Conference, the exact date of the trip, which coincides with the 400th anniversary of Cuba’s patron saint, will be announced in Rome early next week. It will be the first trip by a pontiff since John Paul II’s historic tour in 1998.

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