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President and Mrs. Bush will welcome His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI to the White House on April 16, 2008, during his first visit to the United States as Pope. The President and the Holy Father will continue discussions, which they began during the President's visit to the Vatican in June 2007, on their common commitment to the importance of faith and reason in reaching shared goals. These goals include advancing peace throughout the Middle East and other troubled regions, promoting inter-faith understanding, and strengthening human rights and freedom, especially religious liberty, around the world.