Pope 'serene, concentrated' during spiritual retreat
Benedict set to step down as pontiff next week19 February, 18:03
The outgoing pope is doing a series of spiritual exercises along with other senior Church figures at the Vatican's Apostolic Palace until Saturday.
The exercises have been prepared by the president of the pontifical council for culture, Cardinal Gianfranco Ravasi, who is posting details about them via Twitter.
Two of Tuesday's meditations, for example, focused on the figure of the Messiah as interpreted in several Psalms. People who met the pope during the retreat said he seemed serene and relaxed, while at the same time attentive and concentrated on the exercises, Vatican sources said.