The Vatican has launched an official athletics team which it hopes will one day compete in international sporting competitions, including the Olympics.

"Athletica Vaticana" is the first sports association established in the Vatican following an agreement with the Italian Olympic Committee.

The group's Facebook page says it intends to "promote solidarity and spirituality" through sport.

It currently has 62 accredited athletes which includes priests, nuns and Swiss Guards.

The team's first outing is on January 20th - the 10km Corsa di Miguel in Rome.