Pope Francis Calls on Predecessor Benedict

By: AP Email
By: AP Email

VATICAN CITY (AP) - Pope Francis has visited Emeritus Pope Benedict XVI ahead of his trip to Rio de Janeiro for World Youth Day - a trip Benedict had planned to make before retiring in February.

The Vatican said Francis spent about a half-hour Friday with Benedict and asked him for his prayers for the July 22-28 trip. Francis gave Benedict the booklet outlining the program as well as the commemorative medal that has been prepared for the trip.

Benedict participated in three World Youth Day events: in Cologne, Germany, soon after he was elected in 2005; in Sydney, Australia, in 2008; and Madrid, Spain, in 2011.

His doctors reportedly warned him against making the transatlantic flight to Rio for the 2013 edition, one of the reasons behind his decision to retire.

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