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Rome Reports

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Newly-crowned Spanish royals visit Pope in their first official visit

The first official visit from Spain's newly-crowned monarchs to Pope Francis was all smiles and courtesy.  King Felipe repeated a saying that the Pope himself had told his father, Juan Carlos, to lead let him through the door first: "The altar boy always goes first.â? "You're father told you about that.â? The three met privately for close to 40 minutes. The Pope thanked Felipe and Queen Letizia for visiting him just days after ascending to the throne. He also talked to them about the "importance of promoting dialogue and collaboration between the Church and the State for the good of all Spanish society.â? After, the King introduced his royal entourage, including his doctor and four guards. As a gift, the royal couple gave the Pope a copy of the book by Spanish Jesuit Baltasar Gracian, "The Art of Wordly Wisdom.â? The original version is kept in Argentina. Before saying goodbye, the King noticed that one photographer had not received a rosary, so the Pope search for one himself. Once again, the monarchs used that time to invite the Pope to visit Spain. "We are hopeful to see you in Spain.â? "Pray for me. Greet your parents for me.â? After their papal audience, King Felipe and Queen Letizia met with the Vatican Secretary of State, Pietro Parolin. The couple had already visited Pope Francis at the Vatican before. On March 19, 2013, they attended his Inaugural Mass, but as the prince and princess of Asturias. JMB/RCA CTV VM - BN  Up: YJA