As Pope Francis, an Argentinian, makes his way around South America for his second tour on the continent since his election to the papacy in 2013, he will make stops in Ecuador, Bolivia and Paraguay during his week-long trip, which ends Sunday with his return to Rome.

First stop: Ecuador, where President Rafael Correa greeted Pope Francis with a hug. At the airport, the pope called for people to give “special attention to our most fragile brothers and the most vulnerable minorities, the debt that is still owed by Latin America,” the New York Times reported. The pope was then driven through the streets of Quito.

GettyImages-479826026 Pope Francis waves as he rides in the popemobile through the Ecuadorean capital, Quito, on July 7, 2015. Photo: Juan Cevallos/AFP/Getty Images)

He also held open-air masses in the city of Quayaquil and in Quito and met with church leaders.

GettyImages-479830052 Pope Francis, center, enters San Francisco Church in Quito, on July 7, 2015 for a meeting with political, economic and civil leaders. Photo: Vincenzo Pinto/AFP/Getty Images

GettyImages-479812346 Faithful await for the arrival of Pope Francis at the church of San Francisco in Quito, Ecuador, on July 7, 2015. Photo: Luis Robayo/AFP/Getty Images

He then departed for Bolivia on Wednesday, drinking coca tea on the plane as a remedy for altitude sickness.

GettyImages-479933974 Pope Francis next to Ecuadorean President Rafael Correa before boarding a plane bound for Bolivia, at Quito's airport on July 8, 2015. Photo: Martin Bernetti/AFP/Getty Images

That evening, he gave a speech to Bolivian authorities. "In this land whose history has been marred by exploitation, greed and so many forms of selfishness and sectarianism, now is the time for integration," he said, CNN reported.

GettyImages-480000198 Performers in traditional indigenous dress march as people await the arrival of Pope Francis in the Popemobile on July 8, 2015 in Santa Cruz, Bolivia. Photo: Mario Tama/Getty Images

The next day, he addressed social activists Thursday in Santa Cruz, offering a historic and major apology for the role of the Roman Catholic Church during the era of colonialism. The resources and people of Bolivia, like other Latin American countries, were gravely exploited under Spanish rule, and the Vatican benefited in part from those profits, he said.

“Some may rightly say, ‘When the pope speaks of colonialism, he overlooks certain actions of the church,’” the Pope said, the New York Times reported. “I say this to you with regret: Many grave sins were committed against the native people of America in the name of God.”

"I want to tell you, and I want to be very clear: I humbly ask your forgiveness, not only for the offenses committed by our own church, but for the crimes committed by original inhabitants during the so-called conquest of America," Agence France-Presse reported.

RTX1JSW7 Pope Francis, wearing a helmet, blesses a woman as Bolivian President Evo Morales, right, looks on, during a World Meeting of Popular Movements in Santa Cruz, Bolivia, July 9, 2015. Photo: Reuters/Alessandro Bianchi

He presided at a mass in Santa Cruz de la Sierra.

RTX1JRDG Pope Francis greets people as he leaves after celebrating a Mass at the Cristo Redentor square in Santa Cruz, Bolivia July 9, 2015. Photo: Reuters/Mariana Bazo

Pope Francis is scheduled to depart for Paraguay Friday.