Francis calls on Benedict before leaving for Rio

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.

This story has been automatically published from the Associated Press wire which uses US spellings

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