Pope John Paul offered a silent blessing to hundreds of faithful gathered Sunday outside his hospital room window, where the Roman Catholic pontiff has been recovering from surgery to aid his breathing.
A smiling 84-year-old John Paul appeared to be in good spirits as he made the sign of the cross and waved in steady, strong gestures to cheering pilgrims at Rome's Gemelli Hospital.
He did not speak during his brief appearance, which was broadcast live around the world and on large television screens set up in St. Peter's Square at the Vatican where moments before a senior aide read the pontiff's weekly message and Angelus prayer.
In his message, Pope Paul expressed a special thanks to believers of other faiths, especially Jews and Muslims, for their prayers for his recovery.
Some information for this report provided by AFP and AP.