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February 27th, 2013
06:59 AM ET

CNN's John Allen: Pope Benedict XVI 'emotional' in final public appearance (video)

Sr. Vatican Analyst John Allen on Pope Benedict XVI's final general audience in his role at the head of Catholic Church.

February 27th, 2013
05:02 AM ET

VIDEO: Pope Benedict arrives in St. Peter's Square for final general audience


Rome (CNN) - Throngs of Roman Catholic faithful flocked to St. Peter's Square on Wednesday to hear the final public words of Pope Benedict XVI a day before he steps down and retreats into a life of seclusion.

Vatican officials said 50,000 tickets had been handed out for Benedict's final general audience - but tens of thousands more are expected to witness the historic moment in person.

This morning on "Early Start," CNN's Christiane Amanpour reports live as Pope Benedict XVI arrives for the last time in St. Peter's Square for his final general audience.

READ MORE: Big crowds gather for Benedict's final papal audience