The Vatican

Benedict XVI passes away

The Pope Emeritus died at 9:34 a.m. this morning at the Mater Ecclesiae monastery in the Vatican, after a life of unwavering service to the Church. He was 95 years old. An eminent professor and preeminent theologian, he surprised the world with his resignation from the papacy in February 2013.

Maria José Atienza-December 31, 2022-Reading time: 2 minutes
benedict XVI

Benedict XVI died today at 9:34 a.m. at the Vatican's Mater Ecclesiae Monastery at the age of 95. The Pope Emeritus, who had been residing at the Mater Ecclesiae Monastery since his resignation, had suffered a worsening of his health in recent days. Pope Francis, in fact, asked for prayers for the health of his predecessor during the weekly hearing on Wednesday, December 28.

Born in Marktl am Inn, diocese of Passau (Germany), Josep Ratzinger was born on April 16, 1927 (Holy Saturday), and was baptized on the same day. The cross would remain present in the life of the young man, priest, bishop and cardinal throughout his life.

Endowed with an exceptional intelligence and a palpable humanity for those who knew him, in the extensive biography that can be found in Omnesthe humility of a brilliant professor and eminent theologian, whose Opera Omnia offers an enlightened thought and analysis of the Church and man today.

The papal Magisterium of Benedict XVI is condensed, especially in his three encyclicals Caritas in veritateSpe Salvi y Deus caritas est. However, his prolific theological legacy extends from his initial stage as a teacher and priest, the time at the head of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faithas well as its as Supreme Pontiff of the Catholic Church. A very extensive and profound work of great doctrinal and moral depth without which the Church of today cannot be understood.

The establishment of the Vatican's Joseph Ratzinger Foundation was a boost to the work and teaching of the Pope. This foundation has especially promoted the publication of the complete works, Opera Omnia, of Joseph Ratzinger. Although, for the moment, it is only available in its entirety in Italian, these volumes contain the fundamental characteristics of Joseph Ratzinger's theological thought.

In recent years, Benedict XVI had to suffer a new wave of contradictions with the accusation against him of not having acted with sufficient force in a case of abuse during his time as head of the Munich diocese. An accusation without hard evidence that led Swiss theologian Martin Rhonheimer to denounce an attempt to destroy the reputation of the theologian Joseph Ratzinger at the end of his life".

The frail health of the Pope Emeritus suffered a worsening in the last days of December 2022, although he was "lucid and stable" within gravity. This morning, in a very brief communiqué, the Holy See announced the death of the Pope Emeritus at 9:34 a.m. at the Mater Ecclesiae Monastery in the Vatican.

As reported by Matteo Bruni, director of the Holy See Press Office, Pope Francis will preside over the funeral for the eternal repose of his predecessor on January 5 at 9:30 a.m. in St. Peter's Basilica at the Vatican. Bruni also reported that Benedict XVI received the Anointing of the Sick last Wednesday at the end of Mass at the Monastery and in the presence of the Memores Domini, who had been assisting him daily for years. Before his death, the Pope Emeritus asked that everything be marked by simplicity, a quality with which he lived.

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