Images Show Intimate Meeting Between Pope Francis and Fidel Castro

The pope met privately with the Cuban revolutionary leader Sunday.

BySusanna Kim
September 21, 2015, 2:17 PM

— -- Photos captured the intimate, historic meeting between Pope Francis and Fidel Castro Sunday.

The images show the leader of the Catholic Church, who is 78, exchanging gifts with the 89-year old Cuban revolutionary after a Mass that drew hundreds of thousands of people in Havana.

Castro and Pope Francis grasp hands and exchange laughs, as shown in images of their private meeting. The pope wears traditional papal garb while Castro wears an Adidas track jacket. The meeting lasted about 30 minutes and included Castro's wife and some of his extended family.

PHOTO: Pope Francis meets with former Cuban President Fidel Castro at Castro's resident in Havana, Sept. 20, 2015.
Pope Francis meets with former Cuban President Fidel Castro at Castro's resident in Havana, Sept. 20, 2015.
Cuban Foreign Ministry

The pope gave Castro a book that the Argentine-born Jesuit wrote. Vatican spokesman Frederico Lombardo described the meeting as a "very informal conversation."

PHOTO: Pope Francis meets with former Cuban President Fidel Castro at Castro's resident in Havana, Sept. 20, 2015.
Pope Francis meets with former Cuban President Fidel Castro at Castro's resident in Havana, Sept. 20, 2015.
Cuban Foreign Ministry

The former president of Cuba is shown giving Francis a book about his thoughts on religion.

PHOTO: Pope Francis meets with former Cuban President Fidel Castro at Castro's resident in Havana, Sept. 20, 2015.
Pope Francis meets with former Cuban President Fidel Castro at Castro's resident in Havana, Sept. 20, 2015.
Cuban Foreign Ministry

The two figures sign each other's books with personal messages. Later, the pope had an official meeting with President Raul Castro, Castro's brother.

PHOTO: Pope Francis meets with former Cuban President Fidel Castro at Castro's resident in Havana, Sept. 20, 2015.
Pope Francis meets with former Cuban President Fidel Castro at Castro's resident in Havana, Sept. 20, 2015.
Cuban Foreign Ministry

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