Pope Francis to visit 3 Baltic nations next year: Report

Pope Francis is planning a visit to Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia next year, when the three Baltic nations celebrate their 100th anniversaries.

Daiva Ulbinaite, a spokeswoman for Lithuanian President Dalia Grybauskaite, tells the Baltic News agency the visit is scheduled for autumn of 2018. The agency said the Vatican will soon announce exact dates for the trip.

The three Baltic nations declared their independence from Russia in 1918 but were incorporated into the Soviet Union in 1940 and remained part of it until 1991.

Francis has one other confirmed trip so far in 2018, a Jan. 15-22 visit to Chile and Peru. He is also widely expected to travel to Ireland in August to participate in a large Catholic family rally.