VATICAN CITY – Pope Francis is celebrating an active if low-key 80th birthday, sharing breakfast with eight homeless people before celebrating Mass with cardinals.
The Vatican said that the pope chatted early Saturday with each of the homeless guests — four Italians, two Romanians, a Moldovan and a Peruvian — and shared with them Argentinian cakes before heading to Mass.
Speaking to the cardinals, he contemplated the aging process, telling them, "For some days now, I have had in mind a word that seems ugly: Old age, a thought that frightens." But then he recalled his words during his first papal greeting in 2013, when he said: "Old age is the thirst for knowledge."
To the cardinals he added: "I hope it will be the same for me."