Francis visits Benedict XVI for Christmas

by John L. Allen Jr.

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On Monday, Pope Francis visited his predecessor, Pope Benedict XVI, to deliver best wishes for the Christmas season. The Vatican released the following statement on the meeting on Monday evening Rome time:

"This afternoon, Monday Dec.23, around 5:00 PM, the Holy Father Francis went out to visit the Pope Emeritus, Benedict XVI, in order to express best wishes for the upcoming Christmas holidays. Benedict XVI welcomed Pope Francis at the entrance of his residence (the former monastery Mater Eccclesiae). After a brief prayer together in the chapel, a private meeting took place, lasting roughly a half-hour, in a room of the residence. Then Pope Francis, who was accompanied by his personal secretaries, greeted the other members of the “family” of the Pope Emeritus, Archbishop Gaenswein and the Memores Domini, and left around 5:45 PM. The TV images are available from Vatican TV upon request."

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