Pope Francis celebrates Palm Sunday Mass, in St. Peter’s Square at the Vatican, Sunday, March 24, 2013. Pope Francis celebrated his first Palm Sunday Mass in St. Peter’s Square, encouraging people to be humble and young at heart, as tens of thousands joyfully waved olive branches and palm fronds. The square overflowed with some 250,000 pilgrims, tourists and Romans eager to join the new pope at the start of solemn Holy Week ceremonies, which lead up to Easter, Christianity’s most important day. (AP Photo/Andrew Medichini)
VATICAN CITY (AP) — The renovations on the papal apartment are finished, but Pope Francis has decided to stay put in the Vatican hotel for the time being.
The Vatican said Francis, who has long shunned fancy digs, told staff and guests of the Domus Sanctae Martae on Tuesday that he had no plans to move out any time soon. The occasion was the 7 a.m. Mass that Francis has celebrated each morning in the hotel chapel since his election March 13.
Francis has invited groups of guests to the daily Mass, including Vatican gardeners, street-sweepers, hotel workers and staff of the Vatican newspaper L’Osservatore Romano.
Vatican spokesman the Rev. Federico Lombardi says it’s not clear how long the “experiment” of hotel living will last but that Francis has at least moved into the papal suite.