Pope’s first hours as retiree: Prayer, TV, books

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In this photo, a view of a grotto inside the pope’s summer residence of Castel Gandolfo, in the town of Castelgandolfo, south of Rome. Immediately after his resignation on Feb. 28, 2013, Pope Benedict XVI will spend some time at the papal summer retreat in Castel Gandolfo, overlooking Lake Albano in the hills south of Rome where he has spent his summer vacations reading and writing. AP Photo/Gregorio Borgia

VATICAN CITY — The Vatican says Benedict XVI has spent his first few hours as a retiree praying, watching TV and taking walks.

The Vatican on Friday released details of Benedict’s life inside Castel Gandolfo, the vacation retreat where at 8 p.m. Thursday he became the first pope in 600 years to retire.

Benedict’s secretary, Monsignor Georg Gaenswein, reported to the Vatican that after Benedict said his final public farewell, he ate dinner, took his typical constitutional walk in the palace and watched TV news of his last day as pope. Gaenswein reported he slept well, celebrated Mass as usual and had breakfast, according to the Vatican spokesman.

Gaenswein reported Benedict was relaxed — as evidenced by the fact that he had in recent days resumed playing piano.

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