Amateur footage of the moment a woman jumps a barrier to get to the Pope during this year’s Christmas eve mass in Rome has led news stories across the globe..
The incident has raised serious questions over the Pontiff’s security after the Vatican admitted the woman tried to do the same thing last year.
Although shaken Benedict XVI appeared physically unharmed despite being pulled to the marble floor in St Peter’s Basilica.
An elderly French cardinal next to the Pontiff was not so lucky however. He has been hospitalised with a broken femur.
After being helped back to his feet the 82 year-old head of the world’s 1.1 billion Catholics walked up the main aisle of the cathedral to continue the service.
87 year old Cardinal Roger Etchegaray, who has been in frail health recently, was taken away in a wheelchair nursing his broken leg.
For the first time in recent memory, the mass started two hours before midnight to give the pope more time to rest before today’s main Christmas event at noon.
The woman has been described as mentally unstable by the Vatican chief spokesman and has been detained for questioning.