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The Popemobile goes through the crowds at Hyde Park (Photo: PA)

And, in some ways, Catholics in Britain have already risen to the challenge

Pilgrims at the Hyde Park vigil: it was 'very united, very noisy, very peaceful'  (AP Photo/Alastair Grant)

The last few days have been stupendous. Here are some of my immediate impressions

A screenshot of the encounter from Sky News

Pope gives sniffer dog a pat of thanks

Pope Benedict XVI greeted Jake, a black Springador, before he left for Birmingham International Airport yesterday

Pope Benedict XVI leaves Britain after a farewell ceremony at Birmingham International Airport

Pope Benedict XVI waves on the steps of his aircraft at a departure ceremony at Birmingham International Airport (Photo: Ben Birchall/PA)

Vatican: papal visit was a success

Pope saw Britain’s response as ‘very, very positive’, according to Vatican spokesman

The visit was a personal triumph for the Holy Father himself (Photo: PA)

The last four days began in anxiety, but ended in euphoria

David Cameron and Pope Benedict XVI at a farewell ceremony at Birmingham International Airport (Photo: PA)

In a powerful farewell speech, David Cameron says faith ‘has always been part of the fabric of our country’

Delivered at Birmingham International Airport on Sunday, 19 September 2010

Cardinal Keith O’Brien: ‘You have reassured us that Christianity is alive and well in our countries’

Bishops of England, Scotland and Wales gather around Pope Benedict XVI for a group photograph at Oscott College, Birmingham, in imitation of a famous painting of the first bishops' synod there in 1852 (Photo: Matt Cardy/PA Wire)

Delivered at Oscott College, Birmingham on Sunday, 19 September 2010