Pope Francis falls down step in Poland, but escapes injury

Pope Francis takes a fall at the Holy Mass in the Shrine of Czestochowa in Poland, on July 28, 2016.
Pope Francis takes a fall at the Holy Mass in the Shrine of Czestochowa in Poland, on July 28, 2016. PHOTO: EPA

CZESTOCHOWA, POLAND (AFP) - Pope Francis fell on Thursday (July 28) after apparently stumbling down a step on an altar during a visit to Poland but quickly got back to his feet, seemingly without injury.

Polish media broadcast images of the 79-year-old Argentine pontiff stumbling, then falling down out of view before being helped to his feet by altar servers.

Francis appeared to be fine as he delivered a homily and said mass for hundreds of thousands of pilgrims.

The mishap took place as the Pontiff visited the revered Jasna Gora monastery in Czestochowa, southern Poland.

It is home to the legendary Black Madonna, an icon which Catholic faithful believe has miraculous qualities.

The Pontiff arrived in Krakow, southern Poland, on Thursday to headline the World Youth Day international Catholic extravaganza.