Pope Francis visits 9/11 memorial and museum

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NEW YORK — Pope Francis has paid a visit to the National Sept. 11 Memorial where the World Trade Center stood.

To a cheer from the gathered crowd, he walked toward the two massive waterfall pools that mark the footprints of the twin towers.

The pope prayed silently and laid a white rose at the edge of one of the pools, inscribed with the names of nearly 3,000 people who were killed.

He spoke at an interfaith service, calling for the world to build unity from its differences. It was held in a hall framed partly by an underground flood wall that became an emblem of resilience when it held fast after the attack. Standing nearby was the memento-covered steel column that was the last one removed from the wreckage.

Francis also toured some of the exhibits, including a cross-shaped steel beam found amid the debris.

He visited the museum as part of a three-city U.S. tour. He then departed for a break before resuming his day's busy schedule.

Francis visited the site after a speech at the United Nations. He's on a three-city tour of the U.S.

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