Pope Benedict the
16th arrived into Saint Peters square for his final general audience smiling
and waving from the pope mobile.
He spent about 20
minutes saying hellos, stopping to admire one of the youngest in the crowd.
Aides assisted the
85-year-old as he walked up to the platform. In a clear and strong voice the
Pope thanked the faithful from the bottom of his heart.
The Holy Father acknowledged his eight year reign had rough spots, saying at times it "seemed like the Lord was sleeping."
tomorrow and plans to dedicate the rest of his years to prayer.
An estimated 150,000 people cheered and waved signs thanking the pope for his service. Some wiped away tears.
The Pope will be here at the Vatican until tomorrow afternoon. He'll then take a helicopter to his summer home where he will say one final goodbye.
Many are eager to find out who will succeed Benedict.
Dozens of Cardinals are already here to begin the election process. The Pope asks Catholics to keep them in their prayers.
115 Cardinals will take part in the conclave. The selection process is expected to take place early next month.
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