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Aretha Franklin In Concert

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Getting Aretha Franklin to sing for you could be considered a gift in itself. But the Queen of Soul has something special for Pope Francis when she performs for him at the Festival of Families concert in Philadelphia on Saturday.

Franklin told The Associated Press that she’ll present the pope with a box set of sermons by her father, civil rights activist C.L. Franklin, a famous preacher in his own right. “Almost everything that he recorded is in that set,” she said Wednesday.

She’s one of several singers, including Andrea Bocelli and Juanes, set to perform during the pope’s historic visit to the U.S. He arrived in Washington, D.C., on Tuesday, and will visit New York before ending his trip in Philadelphia.

Franklin praised the pope for his attention to the poor: “He impresses me in just being a very, very kindly pope”

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Aretha To Sing For The Pope, Has Special Gift For Him  was originally published on