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Pope Francis and Pope Emeritus exchange Christmas greetings

By on Friday, 27 December 2013

Benedict and Francis at the Mater Ecclesiae monastery at the Vatican (CNS)

Benedict and Francis at the Mater Ecclesiae monastery at the Vatican (CNS)

Three days after Pope Francis paid his predecessor a visit on Christmas Eve, retired Pope Benedict joined the pope for lunch at the Vatican guesthouse.

The two shared the meal on December 27 at the Domus Sanctae Marthae, where Pope Francis lives.

According to a report by Vatican Radio, the Pope and the retired pope were joined by their personal secretaries and by Archbishop Dominique Mamberti, the Vatican’s secretary for relations with states, and U.S Mgr Peter B Wells, assessor in the Vatican Secretariat of State.

Pope Francis had invited Pope Benedict to lunch on Christmas Eve, when the Pope visited the retired pope in his residence to offer Christmas greetings.

Pope Benedict lives in the former Mater Ecclesiae convent, also in Vatican City State.

During the Pope’s visit, the two prayed briefly together and then spoke privately for about half an hour.