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A crowd in tears at Benedict’s farewell

HIDDEN FROM WORLD  Members of the public and the media wait for Vatican Swiss guards to close the main door of the papal residence in Castel Gandolfo, south of Rome, Thursday, Feb. 28, 2013. Benedict XVI greeted the faithful for the last time as pope on Thursday, telling tearful well-wishers that he is beginning the final stage of his life as "simply a pilgrim," hours before he becomes the first pontiff in 600 years to resign. AP/ALESSANDRA TARANTINO

Pope Benedict XVI’s final goodbye before he retires was met with tears and applause in the tiny hilltop town of Castel Gandolfo near Rome Thursday, where thousands had gathered to hear his emotional last words.

Posted: March 1st, 2013 in Latest News Stories,Photos & Videos,World | Read More »

Benedict vows ‘unconditional obedience’ to future pope

Pope Benedict XVI. AP FILE PHOTO

Pope Benedict XVI on Thursday vowed “unconditional obedience and reverence” to his successor on his final day as leader of the world’s 1.2 billion Catholics.

Posted: February 28th, 2013 in Latest News Stories,World | Read More »

Pope Benedict XVI’s reign enters historic final hours

Pope Benedict XVI .  AP FILE PHOTO

Pope Benedict XVI’s troubled papacy entered its final hours on Thursday before the leader of the world’s 1.2 billion Catholics will make history as the first pontiff to resign since the Middle Ages.

Posted: February 28th, 2013 in Latest News Stories,World | Read More »

Pope’s first refuge: A sumptuous lakeside villa

A view taken on February 20, 2013 shows the Pontiff's gardens of the Apostolic Palace of Castel Gandolfo, Italy. Pope Benedict XVI will stay at the Vatican's summer residence from February 28 until the convent of Mater Ecclesiae (Mother of the Church) at the Vatican will be ready to host him. Pope Benedict XVI began a week-long spiritual retreat out of the public eye on February 18 ahead of his resignation on February 28 with the field of candidates to succeed him still wide open AFP PHOTO / FILIPPO MONTEFORTE

Once he steps down on Thursday, Pope Benedict XVI will begin his retirement in the papal summer residence at Castel Gandolfo, a sumptuous villa outside Rome with ornamental gardens, breathtaking views and its own farm.

Posted: February 27th, 2013 in Latest News Stories,World | Read More »