Benedict Departs Vatican, Ends Papacy
Doors symbolically closed as he flies to summer residence
By Kevin Spak, Newser User
Posted Feb 28, 2013 2:04 PM CST
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, Feb. 28, 2013.   (AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino)

(Newser) – The massive doors to the pope's Castel Gandolfo residence have swung shut, symbolically ending Pope Benedict XVI's tenure as pope. The doors closed just after 8pm local time (2pm Eastern), USA Today reports, about three hours after Benedict had left the Vatican for the last time as pope and boarded a helicopter to take him to the residence.

Bells chimed as the helicopter flew across Rome. It was a short flight, just 17 minutes, after which a limousine took Benedict on a slow ride to the villa, where a massive crowd had gathered. Benedict addressed them from the balcony, saying, "This day brings me great joy. ... I feel very fortunate." Earlier, he issued a final tweet: "Thank you for your love and support. May you always experience the joy that comes from putting Christ at the (center) of your lives."

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Mar 1, 2013 12:27 AM CST
Good riddance to bad rubbish. Maybe the next Pope will have the balls to clean up the cesspool that the Vatican has become. Maybe. But I doubt it.
Feb 28, 2013 9:55 PM CST
Now he is getting down to business to write his future best seller-----"The Priest and the Alter Boy" I have been told it is a step by step guide for training priests on how to keep private matters private!
Feb 28, 2013 6:39 PM CST
Baa- byeeee, papa baby.