World

Come and visit!: Spain's new royals choose Vatican for 1st foreign visit, invite pope to Spain

  • Father Georg Gaenswein, left, welcomes   King Felipe VI of Spain and and Queen Letizia of Spain, as they arrive at the Vatican to meet Pope Francis, Monday, June 30, 2014. (AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino)

    Father Georg Gaenswein, left, welcomes King Felipe VI of Spain and and Queen Letizia of Spain, as they arrive at the Vatican to meet Pope Francis, Monday, June 30, 2014. (AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino)  (The Associated Press)

  • Father Georg Gaenswein, left, welcomes   King Felipe VI of Spain and and Queen Letizia of Spain, as they arrive at the Vatican to meet Pope Francis, Monday, June 30, 2014. (AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino)

    Father Georg Gaenswein, left, welcomes King Felipe VI of Spain and and Queen Letizia of Spain, as they arrive at the Vatican to meet Pope Francis, Monday, June 30, 2014. (AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino)  (The Associated Press)

  • Queen Letizia of Spain looks at the Swiss Guards as she arrives at the Vatican to meet Pope Francis, Monday, June 30, 2014. (AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino)

    Queen Letizia of Spain looks at the Swiss Guards as she arrives at the Vatican to meet Pope Francis, Monday, June 30, 2014. (AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino)  (The Associated Press)

Spain's new king and queen have met with Pope Francis at the Vatican in their first foreign trip as monarchs and have invited the pontiff to visit Spain.

King Felipe VI and Queen Letizia, wearing white as is standard protocol for a queen visiting the pope, were greeted Monday by Francis in the papal library. They chatted for about 40 minutes in private. As they left, Felipe invited Francis to visit and bent down to kiss the pope's ring; Letizia curtsied.

Francis had met Felipe's parents, King Juan Carlos and Queen Sofia, on several occasions, the last time during the April 27 canonizations of Saints John Paul II and John XXIII.

Juan Carlos abdicated earlier this month.