The Bishop of Fall River says Pope Francis is strengthening the Catholic Church wherever he goes.  The Pope will be officially welcomed to the United States on Wednesday with a ceremony on the south lawn of the White House.

Bishop Edgar Da Cunha of the Fall River Diocese calls Francis a tremendous evangelist for the Catholic Church. Da Cunha says Francis is bringing people back to the church because of his policies and his personality.

"I hope that he will be around for a long time so that we can all build on the positive image and rapport he was with people, and build that enthusiasm in our church," said Da Cunha.

The Bishop made his remarks to Jim Marshall during an interview aired on the New Bedford Cable Network.

The Bishop says even those who don't agree with the Pope still support him. "They know he is honest and is a messenger of Christ, and he wants people to believe in and accept the faith."

Da Cunha added, "I think the Holy Spirit really acted in allowing him to be the Pope at this time."

Pope Francis will also visit New York and Philadelphia on his six day U.S. trip.

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