Source AP ©

Pope Benedict XVI to meet family of missing British girl

The family of a 4-year-old British girl who disappeared while on a vacation with her family in Portugal will be presented to Pope Benedict XVI.

Vatican officials said on Monday that the McCann family would be among those brought up to greet the pope during his weekly audience with faithful in St. Peter's Square.

The presentation of VIPs and of others who have won permission from the Vatican to personally greet the pope traditionally takes place at the end of the audience, following the pope's homily to the faithful.

Madeleine McCann disappeared on May 3 when her parents left her and her 2-year-old twin siblings alone in their hotel room while they went to a restaurant in their hotel complex in Praia da Luz, a resort town in Portugal's Algarve region.

The parents, Gerry and Kate McCann, have said they won't return to Britain without their daughter. The family is concentrating on its Internet and media campaigns to publicize her disappearance across Europe. Portuguese and British authorities have been investigating the girl's disappearance.

Last week, the McCanns prayed at the Catholic pilgrimage site in Fatima, Portugal, for her safe return.