Latest developments in Pope Francis' visit to the United States. All times local:

Pope Francis is demanding an end to the arms trade, delivering a tough message to a country that is the world's largest exporter of weapons.

Speaking before Congress, the pope asked why weapons are being sold to people who intend only to inflict suffering on innocents. He said: "Sadly, the answer as we all know, is simply for money: money that is drenched in blood, often innocent blood."

Francis has in the past denounced weapons makers and dealers as "the root of evil" and questioned how weapons manufacturers can call themselves Christian.

Francis has, however, said that it is legitimate to use military force against an "unjust aggression," such as the attacks by Islamic extremists against Christian and other religious minorities in Syria and Iraq.

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10:50 a.m.

Pope Francis has used his speech to Congress to express sympathy for American Indians for their "turbulent and violent" early contacts with arriving Europeans. But he says it is hard to judge past actions by today's standards.

Francis did not specifically use the term American Indians. He said the rights of "those who were here long before us" were not always respected.

He says that "for those people and their nations," he wants to express his highest esteem and appreciation.

Francis has been criticized by some Native Americans for his decision to canonize an 18th century missionary, Junipero Serra, on Wednesday. Indigenous groups say Serra was part of the violent colonizing machine that wiped out indigenous populations. Francis has defended Serra as a great evengelizer who protected indigenous peoples from the abuses of colonizers.

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10:35 a.m.

Speaking to Congress, Pope Francis is calling for an end to the death penalty in the U.S. and across the world.

Francis says that every life is sacred and society can only benefit from rehabilitating those convicted of crimes.

The pope noted that U.S. bishops have renewed their call to abolish capital punishment. That idea is unpopular, however, with many American politicians.

The pontiff did not specifically mention abortion — a particularly contentious issue in Congress at the moment that threatens to force the shutdown of the U.S. government next week.

Still, his remarks referred to the Catholic church's opposition to abortion. He urged lawmakers and all Americans to "protect and defend human life at every stage of its development."

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10:30 a.m.

Pope Francis is urging Congress members — and the United States as a whole — not to be afraid of immigrants but to welcome them as fellow human beings.

He says people are not things that can be discarded just because they are troublesome.

The pontiff's admonition comes as the presidential race is roiled by questions about immigration from Mexico and Latin America, and the nation is weighing how many migrants to accept from wars in the Middle East.

The son of Italian immigrants to Argentina himself, Francis noted that the United States was founded by immigrants, that many lawmakers are descended from foreigners, and that this generation must not "turn their back on our neighbors."

His plea: "Let us treat others with the same passion and compassion with which we want to be treated."

10:15 a.m.

Pope Francis is calling for a "delicate balance" in fighting religious extremism to ensure that fundamental freedoms aren't trampled at the same time.

He says in his speech to Congress that "no religion is immune from forms of individual delusion or ideological extremism."

He says religious, intellectual and individual freedoms must be safeguarded, while combatting violence perpetrated in the name of religion.

The pope cautions against simplistically breaking the world into camps of good and evil.

Francis has expressed deep concern about the slaughter of Christians and other religious minorities in the Middle East at the hands of Islamic extremists, fearing that the Christian presence in the region is risk. He's dispatched envoys to Iraq with money and other forms of assistance to help refugees.

10:05 a.m.

Pope Francis has opened his historic speech to Congress by describing himself as a "son of this great continent" joined in a common purpose with America.

The Argentine-born pope is the first from the Americas. And his speech to Congress is the first by any pontiff.

A bipartisan group of congressional leaders escorted him up the aisle for his speech in the House chamber, as tens of thousands waited outside.

10:04 a.m.

Pope Francis has arrived in the House chamber for his speech to Congress.

The pontiff walked up the aisle to thunderous applause from standing lawmakers, and paused to shake the hand of Secretary of State John Kerry.

House Speaker John Boehner told lawmakers he had the "high privilege and distinct honor" of presenting the pope.

9:50 a.m.

Pope Francis has opened his historic speech to Congress by describing himself as a "son of this great continent" joined in common purpose with America.

The Argentine-born pope is the first from the Americas. And his speech to Congress is the first by any pontiff.

A bipartisan group of congressional leaders escorted him up the aisle for his speech in the House chamber, as tens of thousands waited outside.

9:30 a.m.

With a handshake and a smile, House Speaker John Boehner has welcomed Pope Francis to his ornate ceremonial office in the Capitol prior to the first papal address to Congress in history.

The Ohio Republican told Francis, "Your Holiness, welcome, really glad that you're here."

Boehner's eyes moistened as the pope told him he was glad to be there, too.

The two men then sat next to each other, accompanied by Vatican and church officials and Boehner aides.

Boehner told the pontiff that his staff had urged him to wear the green tie he was sporting. That drew a compliment from Francis, delivered through an interpreter.

The interpreter told Boehner, "He says it's a tie with the color of hope."

Before the pope's arrival, Boehner told those waiting with him that the pope's visit was "a big deal" for him, as a Catholic.

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9:20 a.m.

Pope Francis met briefly with House Speaker John Boehner in an opening act of his historic visit to Congress.

Awaiting the pope's arrival, Boehner repeatedly straightened his tie and shifted from foot to foot, and joked and chatted with reporters about the history of the House furnishings. Their visit lasted only a few minutes. Tens of thousands wait outside, with lawmakers and guests seated in the House chamber for the first speech by a pope to Congress.