Francis honors Benedict, says retirement very 'Franciscan'

Pope Francis is celebrating the 65th anniversary of the ordination of his predecessor, Emeritus Pope Benedict XVI, with an unprecedented ceremony inside the Vatican featuring a reigning pope honoring a retired one.

Francis entered the Clementine Hall to applause Tuesday and went straight to embrace Benedict, who stood up and removed his white skullcap in a sign of deference.

Benedict then listened intently as Francis addressed him — as "Your Holiness" — lauding his 65 years of service to the church and saying his decision to retire to a small monastery was a very "Franciscan" thing to do.

Francis has recently dismissed new questions about the implications of Benedict's resignation by insisting that there is only one pope — himself — and that Benedict had pledged his obedience to him.