Blesses crowd outside the Capitol
Pope Francis addressed a Joint Session of Congress on Thursday, Sept. 24.
The Pope, who became the first pontiff to address Congress, thanked lawmakers for their warm welcome.
"I am most grateful for your invitation to address this Joint Session of Congress," he said.
"Each son or daughter of a given country has a mission, a personal and social responsibility. Your own responsibility as members of Congress is to enable this country, by your legislative activity, to grow as a nation. You are the face of its people, their representatives."
Before the speech, House Speaker John Boehner met with Pope Francis in a room outside the House chamber, where the Pope complimented the Speaker's green tie, saying it was the "color of hope."
After his remarks, Pope Francis stopped in Statuary Hall, where he blessed a statue of Junipero Serra, an 18th century Spanish missionary, whom the Pope had canonized the previous evening. Serra is the first saint to be canonized on U.S. soil and his statue is one of two California has in the Capitol collection.
Pope Francis, Speaker Boehner, Vice President Joe Biden, and other Congressional leaders then stepped out onto the Speaker's balcony, where the Pope blessed a crowd who cheered "papa, papa."
Speaking in Spanish, he greeted the crowd with "Buenos Dias."
"I am so grateful for your presence," he told the crowd via a translator.
Speaker Boehner's has behind-the-scenes photos and video on his website of the Pope's visit.