Benedict: Pray for Me, Next Pope
It's his second-to-last Angelus blessing until he steps down
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Feb 17, 2013 5:25 AM CST
Updated Feb 17, 2013 6:04 AM CST
Pope Benedict XVI blesses the faithful from his window overlooking St.Peter's Square during the Angelus prayer, Sunday, Feb. 10, 2013.   (AP Photo/Gregorio Borgia)

(Newser) – Pope Benedict XVI is blessing the faithful from his window overlooking St. Peter's Square for the first time since announcing his resignation, cheered by an emotional crowd of tens of thousands of well-wishers from around the world. Speaking in Spanish, Reuters notes that Benedict implored the crowd, "I beg you to continue praying for me and for the next pope." He triumphantly raised his arms outstretched to the crowd in his second-to-last Angelus blessing before leaving the papacy. A huge banner in the square read: "We love you."

The appointment today is one of the most cherished traditions of the Catholic Church, and this moment is one of Benedict's last opportunities to connect with the Catholic masses. The pontiff will spend the rest of the week on a Lenten prayer retreat, reports the BBC.

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