Europe

Pope puts focus on peripheries during Milan pastoral visit

  • Pope Francis changes his skull cap as he arrives at Milan's Linate airport, northern Italy, for a one-day pastoral visit to Monza and Milan, Italy’s second-largest city, Saturday, March 25, 2017. On Friday Francis welcomed 27 EU leaders to the Vatican on the eve of a summit to mark the 60th anniversary of the Treaty of Rome, the founding charter of the bloc. At right the Archbishop of Milan, Cardinal Angelo Scola looks on. (AP Photo/Luca Bruno)

    Pope Francis changes his skull cap as he arrives at Milan's Linate airport, northern Italy, for a one-day pastoral visit to Monza and Milan, Italy’s second-largest city, Saturday, March 25, 2017. On Friday Francis welcomed 27 EU leaders to the Vatican on the eve of a summit to mark the 60th anniversary of the Treaty of Rome, the founding charter of the bloc. At right the Archbishop of Milan, Cardinal Angelo Scola looks on. (AP Photo/Luca Bruno)  (The Associated Press)

  • Pope Francis arrives at Milan's Linate airport, northern Italy, for a one-day pastoral visit to Monza and Milan, Italy’s second-largest city, Saturday, March 25, 2017. On Friday Francis welcomed 27 EU leaders to the Vatican on the eve of a summit to mark the 60th anniversary of the Treaty of Rome, the founding charter of the bloc. (AP Photo/Luca Bruno)

    Pope Francis arrives at Milan's Linate airport, northern Italy, for a one-day pastoral visit to Monza and Milan, Italy’s second-largest city, Saturday, March 25, 2017. On Friday Francis welcomed 27 EU leaders to the Vatican on the eve of a summit to mark the 60th anniversary of the Treaty of Rome, the founding charter of the bloc. (AP Photo/Luca Bruno)  (The Associated Press)

  • Pope Francis arrives at Linate airport, northern Italy, for a one-day pastoral visit to Monza and Milan, Italy’s second-largest city, Saturday, March 25, 2017. On Friday Francis welcomed 27 EU leaders to the Vatican on the eve of a summit to mark the 60th anniversary of the Treaty of Rome, the founding charter of the bloc. (AP Photo/Luca Bruno)

    Pope Francis arrives at Linate airport, northern Italy, for a one-day pastoral visit to Monza and Milan, Italy’s second-largest city, Saturday, March 25, 2017. On Friday Francis welcomed 27 EU leaders to the Vatican on the eve of a summit to mark the 60th anniversary of the Treaty of Rome, the founding charter of the bloc. (AP Photo/Luca Bruno)  (The Associated Press)

Pope Francis has arrived in Milan on a one-day visit to the world's largest diocese and the home base of his main competition for the papacy, Cardinal Angelo Scola.

The pope's first stop Saturday is a housing project on the outskirts of Italy's fashion and finance capital, a stop that underlines the pope's view that the peripheries offer a better view of reality than well-tended and prosperous city centers.

Francis will also visit the city's main prison, offer a blessing at the Gothic-era Duomo cathedral and say an open-air Mass.

It is the fifth papal visit to Milan, the world's largest parish with 5 million faithful, including two by Pope John Paul II and one by Pope Benedict the XVI.