Pope Francis is scheduled to visit the country this year, but the Vatican is also considering making the pope’s visit to Ireland contingent on the Irish government fulfilling its obligations to provide financial aid to the Vatican, according to a Vatican source.
The source, who requested anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to the media, said Francis plans to make the trip, scheduled for the end of June 2019, contingent on Irish authorities fulfilling their obligation to provide aid.
Ireland’s government has been accused of not doing enough to help pay for the construction of a new church for Pope Francis in the Vatican compound, which has cost billions of euros.
The Irish government has rejected the allegations and said it will be reimbursing the Vatican for the cost of building the new church.
Irish Prime Minister Leo Varadkar has said he will not attend the visit, but his government is working to arrange financial support.
Irish media reports earlier this month that Varadker had said he would consider attending if the Vatican agrees to contribute the money.
The Vatican’s response was not immediately clear.
The Vatican has not publicly responded to the report.
Irish Foreign Minister Simon Coveney has been a leading advocate for the pope to visit, arguing that it would be the best way to help Ireland rebuild after the devastating floods that swept through the country in 2017 and caused widespread damage to infrastructure and homes.
Ireland is expected to get some of the money it needs from the European Union and the World Bank, which are set to hand over billions in loans and grants in 2018 to help the Irish economy recover from the devastating flooding.
The Irish government’s decision to host the pope has angered some Irish politicians who say the country is not financially strong enough to pay for its own rebuilding.
Ireland will receive an additional $1.4 billion from the EU, which will be distributed to the country’s poorest, most vulnerable citizens.