Published: Feb 17, 2013 12:05 PM EST

VATICAN CITY (AP) - Pope Benedict XVI is blessing the faithful from his window overlooking St. Peter's Square for the first time since announcing his resignation, cheered by an emotional crowd of tens of thousands of well-wishers from around the world.
    
Benedict triumphantly raised his arms outstretched to the crowd in his second-to-last Angelus blessing before leaving the papacy. A huge banner in the square read: "We love you."
    
The Sunday appointment is one of the most cherished traditions of the Catholic Church, and this moment is one of Benedict's last opportunities to connect with the Catholic masses.

(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)