BBC Home
Explore the BBC
BBC News
Launch consoleBBC NEWS CHANNEL
Languages
Last Updated: Friday, 21 January 2005, 16:05 GMT
Pope honours lambs with blessing
Pope blesses lambs
The lambs will be sheared for their wool
Most visitors granted an audience with Pope John Paul II maintain a respectful demeanour in the presence of the head of the Roman Catholic Church.

Two small visitors to the Vatican on Friday just bleated.

Tucked in wicker baskets and adorned with flowers, two lambs were blessed by the Pope to mark the Feast of St Agnes.

Sheared wool from the white lambs, which bleated several times during the brief ceremony, will be used to make vestments for new archbishops.

New archbishops are given a pallium, a band of white wool decorated with black crosses, for use in special masses.

The blessing ceremony traditionally takes place on 21 January, the feast of third-century martyr St Agnes, who is often symbolised by a lamb.


SEE ALSO:
Pope condemns Iraq church attacks
08 Dec 04 |  Middle East
Pope addresses US abuse scandal
02 Sep 04 |  Americas
Profile: Pope John Paul II
02 Oct 03 |  Europe


RELATED INTERNET LINKS:
The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites


PRODUCTS AND SERVICES

Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific