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St Pope John Paul II walks in the Dolomite mountains in 1996 (Photo: PA)

The idea of old age as the last stage in the journey to God is a source of great hope

Pope Francis greets pilgrims in wheelchairs during his general audience (Photo: CNS)

At his general audience Francis says that being old is no time for resting

Pope Francis during an encounter with the elderly in September (CNS)

Francis says it is ‘easy to put our consciences to sleep’ and not visit parents for months at a time

Francis speaks to three of the young Catholics from Belgium

The Pope made the remark in a televised interview with five young Catholics from Belgium

A family in Paraguay, like in Kenya, can't rely on a generous welfare state (AP Photo/Jorge Saenz)

How can we revive family life in Britain?

The family is the original safety net. But, for many of us, it’s just not there any more

Pope Benedict and, right, Andrea Riccardi, an Italian government minister, pictured during the visit (Photo: AP)

Benedict XVI says he is ‘an elderly man visiting his peers’ during visit to a home run by the Sant’Egidio Community