Pope Prepares Return to Vatican

Thanks Staff, Faithful at Castel Gandolfo

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CASTEL GANDOLFO, Italy, SEPT. 29, 2011 (Zenit.org).- Benedict XVI is taking leave of the faithful of Castel Gandolfo who supported his stay at the papal summer residence there. He is scheduled to return to the Vatican on Saturday afternoon.

Today and Wednesday, the Holy Father met with civil and religious authorities of the site, as well as workers who staff the residence and provide for the Pope and the tourists who come to visit him.

«I assure you, for my part, that I will not fail to pray for each one of you and for all your intentions and I ask you to remember me in your prayers,» the Pontiff told them.

He reminded the group today that the Lord is «rich in kindness and mercy» and never abandons those who trust him.

May he «be always your firm support,» the Holy Father invited. «May the Virgin Mary, who in the month of October we will invoke in a special way with the recitation of the rosary, watch over you with maternal protection. May she accompany you and your families at all times.»

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