Philadelphia has a new brother in Pope Francis, as he ventured into the City of Brotherly Love on Saturday to preach his message of religious joy, kindness and acceptance of others. Though he had a busy schedule, he let his sunny personality shine like the sundogs above (for more on that, see below), while blessing children everywhere he went.
Besides the lighter #PopeinPhilly moments, Francis also confronted serious issues facing the church.
Here are some of the standout moments from the final leg of his historic U.S. visit:
Francis Says 'God Weeps' for Sex Abuse Victims
The pontiff met with bishops and seminarians in Philadelphia and said, "God weeps for the sex abuse of children. This cannot be maintained in secret." He vowed “careful oversight” in the Catholic Church to ensure “all responsible" in the scandal "will be held accountable.”
Pope Greets Prisoners
Francis met with prisoners at Curran-Fromhold Correctional Facility and sat in a chair made by the prisons and gave them a thumbs up. He went on to say to them, "I am here as a pastor, but above all as a brother, to share your situation and to make it my own." After his speech, he embraced some of the prisoners.
Francis Blesses Boy With Disabilities
When he landed in Philadelphia, Francis got into his Fiat as if he was ready to drive away – only to get out of the car and bless a child with cerebral palsy, whose mother was touched beyond speaking. Read more >>
Pope Kisses Babies
As Francis arrived at Independence Hall, two tiny babies were hoisted up in the air in front of his popemobile. He gave each a gentle kiss.
(Video courtesy Dana Madden)
Pope Speaks From Lincoln's Lecturn at Independence Hall
As the Pope shared a message of hope for immigrants in front of Independence Mall, he stood at the very same lecturn that President Abraham Lincoln used as he delivered the Gettysburg Address. "Don't be ashamed," Francis said to immigrants. Read More >>
Aretha Franklin Praises Dances After Singing to Pope
Aretha Franklin sang a gospel rendition of "Amazing Grace" during the World Meeting of Families festival. As she exited the stage, she caught the Holy Ghost and danced off the stage.
Sundog: Rainbow Colored Light Follows Pope Francis
Were rainbows following the pope from New York to Philly? Social media images of rainbows were shared in both cities. But it turns out the beams of rainbow-colored light are called a sundog and caused by the sunlight refracting in the ice crystals of cirrus clouds, which were over New York Friday and Philly Saturday.
'Happy Birthday' to a Bishop
We all know it doesn't take much to make the Speaker cry. But these tears have extra resonance when you consider that Boehner, a former altar boy, has worked for years to get a Pope to visit the Capitol. Read more >>