'I am not abandoning the church'

Feb 25, 2013, 00:57 IST | Agencies

Pope Benedict XVI gave his final Sunday blessing at the Vatican yesterday before he steps down on Thursday.

In his last Angelus in St Peter's Square, he told thousands of cheering pilgrims he was following God’s wishes in deciding to abdicate.

Pic/AFP/Osservatore Romano

The 85-year-old Pontiff said, “I am not abandoning the Church and shall continue to serve it in a manner more adapted to my age and strength,” through prayer and meditation, he added.

A nun prays during the Pope’s last Angelus prayer in St Peter’s Square. (Right) A youngster holds a banner reading “You are not alone, I’m also with you”.

The Pope’s final Sunday blessing made it to the front page of newspapers in Italy 

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