The Pope appeared amused when a young boy wandered onto stage and refused to leave his side as he addressed thousands of pilgrims.
John Paul the Second is to become a saint, the Vatican announced today, just 8 years after his death.
A cleric, a member of Italy's secret services and a financial broker arrested in an Italian investigation into the Vatican bank.
A Vatican cleric, a member of Italy's secret services and a financial broker have been arrested as part of an Italian investigation into the Vatican bank, a police source and a lawyer told Reuters.
The cleric, Monsignor Nunzio Scarano, worked as an accountant in the Vatican's financial administration. He was arrested in a parish in Rome's outskirts, his lawyer Silverio Sica said.
Scarano was suspended from his duties several weeks ago when he was placed under investigation by magistrates in the southern city of Salerno, his home town.
In that investigation, Scarano was accused of taking 600,000 Euros in cash out of an account in the Vatican bank a little at a time, usually 10,000 Euros, and giving it to friends who gave him checks. It is alleged he then deposited the checks into an Italian bank account to pay off a mortgage.
A Vatican official has been arrested over an alleged plot to bring €20 million into Italy on a government plane, a lawyer told the Associated Press.
Pope Francis has named a commission of inquiry to look into the Vatican bank amid new money-laundering probe.
Pope Francis praised worshippers for turning out to greet him at the Vatican in heavy rain after receiving a soaking himself.
The 76-year-old zipped around St. Peter's Square in his open-air jeep through a sea of brightly coloured umbrellas.
Looking damp and slightly weather-beaten, the pontiff told followers: "Congratulations for your courage under this rain."
A man climbed St Peter's Basilica in the Vatican and unveiled a banner protesting against Italy's austerity measures.
The banner read "stop this massacre a political horror show" which is believed to be a reference to Italy's coalition struggling with high unemployment and the recession.
Days after his inauguration, Pope Francis is set to return to a packed St Peter's Square for Palm Sunday Mass.
The Mass, which begins the start of Holy Week towards Easter, is set to be attended by thousands of pilgrims in Rome.
Yesterday, Pope Francis flew south of the city for an historic lunch meeting with his predecessor, Pope Emeritus Benedict.
Pope Francis flew to Gandolfo Castle, his predecessor's home south of Rome, for today's historic private lunch with Pope Emeritus Benedict XVII.
The pair warmly embraced each other and shared a few quiet words before heading inside to pray together and dine.