The Irish-born Cardinal who is coordinating arrangements for Pope Francis' planned visit to Ireland next year has said he expects the Pontiff will attend at least two of the events surrounding the World Meeting of Families in Ireland next year.

The World Meeting of Families is due to be held here between 21-26 August 2018.  

Cardinal Kevin Farrell, speaking at a Down and Connor Diocesan meeting in Belfast, said he expected that Pope Francis would attend the Festival of Families event and a mass to conclude the World Meeting of Families on Sunday 26 August next year.

On the issue of whether Pope Francis would visit the North on his trip to Ireland, Cardinal Farrell said he did not think that had been discussed yet.

He said the Pope usually decides on his schedule six months in advance.