Thursday, February 28, 2013
February 27, 2013. (Romereports.com) Benedict XVI led his last general audience, which is also his last public event as Pope. With more than 200,000 people in St. Peter's Square, he thanked everyone for their support during these last eight years and especially since he announced his resignation.
“I am also deeply grateful for the understanding, support and prayers of so many of you, not only here in Rome, but also throughout the world.”
He made his way through St. Peter's Square in the popemobile, greeting pilgrims and even hugging a few newborns along the way. His speech was interrupted with applause a total of 17 times. The Pope then said that ever since he was elected Pope, back in 2005, he has asked one question to God.
“Lord, what do you ask of me? This mission is a great responsibility to have on my shoulders, but if You call me to it, with Your words I will launch the fishing nets, knowing that You will guide me.”
Benedict XVI said that even after he resigns, his life will forever belong to the Church. He said that once he became Pope he agreed to leave behind his privacy-and this he said, is a promise he plans to follow. He said he will still be active in the Church, through prayer.
“The decision I have made, after much prayer, is the fruit of a serene trust in God’s will and a deep love of Christ’s Church. I will continue to accompany the Church with my prayers, and I ask each of you to pray for me and for the new Pope.”
With thousands of people in St. Peter's Square, Benedict XVI said farewell, leading the way for a new chapter in the history of the Church.