Pope gets unusual gift during Maltese audience

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Associated Press

Posted on March 21, 2014 at 2:02 PM

Updated Friday, Mar 21 at 2:05 PM

VATICAN CITY (AP) — Like his papal predecessors, Pope Francis receives all kinds of official gifts from visiting dignitaries: plaques, religious icons and limited-edition books.

On Friday, he received something rather unique from little Luca Manconi, the 3-year-old grandson of Maltese President George Abela, who tagged along for his grandfather's audience with the pope. When Luca and his parents joined Abela's delegation at the end of the 20-minute private meeting, he presented Francis with a little plastic dinosaur.

Francis seemed utterly charmed by Luca and his 2-year-old cousin Georgia-Mae, taking them both by the hand and walking to his chair. He also gave a tender kiss to Luca's 6-week-old brother, Matteo.

Abela end his five-year term as Malta's figurehead president April 4.

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