For all of you who have wondered why the Masters of Ceremonies hold the hem of the Holy Father's alb when he climbs stairs, here is your answer.
It's a long garment which needs to be lifted so one doesn't step on the alb and fall. It's something I have seen many times at Mass and Pope Benedict gave everyone an example of exactly how it can occur last Sunday at the Pentecost Mass.
Rome Reports has the story and video.
The good news: The Holy Father was unhurt and continued his day as planned.