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His Holiness

Pope Benedict makes rare public appearance to join Pope Francis at Vatican event for elderly

Pope Benedict XVI joined Pope Francis at the Vatican on Sunday for an event focused on the elderly. The event was only the third time Benedict, 87, has attended a public event since his resignation from the papacy in February 2013.

At Sunday's event in St. Peter's Square, Pope Francis addressed roughly 40,000 elderly people, calling the neglect of elder care "hidden euthanasia." Francis also stressed the role of grandparents in instilling faith in younger generations. Benedict took a special seat at the event, which also included a performance by Andrea Bocelli. He left before Francis held a Mass for the elderly.

"Violence against the elderly is as inhuman as that against children," Pope Francis said in his speech. "How many times are old people just discarded, victims of an abandonment that is tantamount to hidden euthanasia. This is the result of a throw-away culture that is hurting our world so much."