Does this news article title use the word "to" to emphasize?

Pope to meet U.S. bishops amid sex abuse scandal, allegations of Vatican coverup

1 Answer 1


No, it is not used for emphasis. Headlines follow different rules than the typical, standard sentence. The verb BE is often omitted, and to-infinitives are used to express a future event (Wikipedia):

Headlinese is an abbreviated form of news writing style used in newspaper headlines. Because space is limited, headlines are written in a compressed telegraphic style, using special syntactic conventions, including:

  • Forms of the verb "to be" and articles (a, an, the) are usually omitted.
  • Most verbs are in the simple present tense, e.g. "Governor signs bill", while the future is expressed by an infinitive, with to followed by a verb, as in "Governor to sign bill".

You can check the page for more rules.

The title is simply saying that the Pope will meet, or is going to meet, with U.S. bishops (future). The article clarifies:

Pope Francis will meet Thursday with a delegation of U.S. cardinals and bishops over the sex abuse and coverup scandal roiling the Catholic Church and his own papacy, the Vatican said Tuesday.

It is not a matter of emphasis. It is simply a way to save space in the title, as the Wikipedia article notes.

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