Analysis: The prospect of a weakened papacy seemed plausible in the wake of Pope Benedict's announcement, but the world has watched his successor make the office stronger.
In retirement, Pope Benedict XVI follows a schedule similar to that of any retired bishop or religious: He prays, reads, strolls, talks with people and offers them spiritual advice.
Pope Francis recognized the martyrdom of 124 Catholics who were killed during widespread persecution in Korea in the 18th through 19th centuries.
He also approved a decree recognizing the martyrdom of Conventual Franciscan Fr. Francesco Zirano, an Italian priest killed in Algeria in 1603.
The pope's approval of the martyrdom decrees Friday opened the way for the martyrs' beatifications on a date yet to be announced. A miracle is required before any blessed may be canonized.
An invitation to attend Pope Francis' early morning Mass is a hot ticket in Rome, but the pope said the Mass -- in his residence or anywhere else -- isn't an event, but a time for entering into the mystery of God.
"Maybe someone would say, 'Oh, I must get to Mass at Sanctae Marthae because the pope's morning Mass is on the Rome tourist itinerary,' " he said, according to a report by Vatican Radio.
The sainthood process is long and complicated, but the procedure is driven by Catholics in the pews, especially those on their knees.
Pope Francis said contemporary ideas of marriage as an arrangement defined by personal needs promote a mentality of divorce, and he called for better preparation of engaged couples as well as ministry to Catholics whose marriages have failed.
The pope's remarks appeared in a message distributed Friday to Polish bishops making ad limina visits to Rome to report on the state of their dioceses. Pope Francis met with the group but, as he frequently does, dispensed with reading out his prepared text.
The Vatican said it would continue to adhere to the Convention on the Rights of the Child despite what it views as unfair criticism and suggestions that would violate church teaching.
Pope Francis reconfirmed Polish Cardinal Stanislaw Rylko as president of the Pontifical Council for the Laity and German Bishop Josef Clemens as secretary.
Among the 14 new members named Thursday were Archbishop Charles Chaput of Philadelphia; Cardinal Luis Tagle of Manila, Philippines; Cardinal Christoph Schonborn of Vienna; and Cardinal Reinhard Marx of Munich and Freising, Germany, who is also part of the pope's eight-member Council of Cardinals that advises the pope on reorganizing the Roman Curia.
Philomena Lee, the real-life woman whose life story is the center of "Philomena," met Pope Francis Wednesday.
On Feb. 22, Archbishop Loris Capovilla, 98, who has spent his life devoted to Blessed John XXIII, will become the oldest living cardinal.