FILE PHOTO: Pope Francis wearing a face mask attends an inter-religious prayer service for peace along with other religious representatives in the Basilica of Santa Maria in Aracoeli, a church on top of Rome's Capitoline Hill, in Rome, Italy, Oct. 20, 2020. REUTERS/Guglielmo Mangiapane/File Photo

Both Pope Francis and his predecessor, former pope Benedict XVI, have received the coronavirus vaccine, the Vatican said on Thursday.

“I can confirm that as part of the vaccination program of the Vatican City State, as of today, the first dose of the Covid-19 vaccine has been administered to Pope Francis and to the Pope Emeritus,” said Matteo Bruni, director of the Holy See Press Office in response to journalists’ questions.


Pope Francis had announced during an interview with Italian television station Tg5 on Sunday that he planned to receive the vaccine this week.

The Pope referred to the vaccination as “an ethical action, because you are gambling with your health, you are gambling with your life, but you are also gambling with the lives of others.”

Private Secretary to Pope emeritus Benedict XVI, Bishop Georg Gaenswein, had also confirmed that the Pope emeritus would be vaccinated.

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