Pope Francis arrives in Cairo on Friday, less than a month after Islamic militant attacks on Coptic Christian churches killed 45 people.
Security is a primary concern but the pope has insisted on using an ordinary car during his visit in order to be closer to people.
The trip is also aimed at strengthening ties with Muslim leaders and showing solidarity after the devastating attacks.
“This visit comes where Egyptians are wounded because of what happens, wounded in their hearts and when a Pope comes is to consolidate and give his solidarity to all the people,” said Rafik Grish, Coptic Catholic church spokesman.
Sentiments shared by Egyptian Catholic, Catherine Ghazal: “We are very happy that the Pope is coming to visit Egypt. It’s a message of love and peace from him and he is trying to prove to the world that Egypt is still safe no matter what terrorism is trying to do in our country.”
Pope Francis will visit Cairo’s largest Coptic cathedral to pray for the 28 people killed in a Christmas season blast last year.
He will also meet the head of the Coptic Orthodox church who barely escaped the Alexandria bombing last month.
Please pray for my journey tomorrow as a pilgrim of peace to Egypt.— Pope Francis (@Pontifex) April 27, 2017