Lightning stuck St Peter’s dome at the Vatican on Monday after Pope Benedict XVI announced he will resign as leader of the world’s 1.1 billion Catholics on February 28.
The pontiff, 85, made the announced on Monday, ignited a lot of reaction from across the globe.
He says his vast age prevented him from carrying out his duties, an unprecedented move in the modern history of the Catholic Church.
Global news agency Agence France-Presse published an image of lightning striking the basilica’s dome , which it said was taken “on the day the Pope” announced his resignation.
AFP said the striking image was captured by photographer Filippo Monteforte, who works for Italian national news and photo agency ANSA.
Monteforte’s website shows that he has photographed the Pope extensively for for more than a decade. He is also listed as a AFP photographer, with a portfolio of his work on the news agency’s website.