In a March 4, 2015, file photo, singer Aretha Franklin is interviewed after a taping for American Idol XIV at The Fillmore Detroit. Organizers announced Monday, Sept. 14, 2015, that Franklin will perform for Pope Francis during an outdoor festival in Philadelphia on the next-to-last night of his U.S. tour this month. (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio, File)
NEW YORK (AP) — 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 said in an interview with The Associated Press on Wednesday that she’ll present the pope with a huge box set of sermons by her father, civil rights activist C.L. Franklin, a famous preacher in his own right.
She’s one of several singers set to perform for the pope’s historic visit to the U.S. He arrived in Washington, D.C., on Tuesday. He’ll visit New York City before ending his trip with a visit to Philadelphia.
Franklin said she felt “most appreciated” to be included in the concert.
She plans to sing “Amazing Grace” for Pope Francis and another song she declined to reveal. Said Franklin: “I’ll let you be surprised.”