Pope Francis draws 2m for vigil on Copacabana Beach

Pope Francis drew an estimated two million Catholic faithful to Rio's Copacabana Beach for the final evening of World Youth Day, hours after he chastised the Brazilian church for failing to stem the "exodus" of Catholics to evangelical congregations.

In the longest and most important speech of his four-month pontificate, Pope Francis said: "At times we lose people because they don't understand what we are saying, because we have forgotten the language of simplicity and import an intellectualism foreign to our people.

Pope Francis greets the faithful as he arrives at Copacabana Beach. Credit: Reuters

"Without the grammar of simplicity, the Church loses the very conditions which make it possible to fish for God in the deep waters of his mystery", he added.

Catholic faithful crowd the streets and Copacabana Beach. Credit: Reuters/Sergio Moraes

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Pope ends historic Brazil tour

Pope Francis has left Brazil with Rio still pulsating with excitement after an historic beachfront Mass for more than 3 million people in which he challenged young people to build a new world based on tolerance and love.