Entering history in 2013, after becoming the first Pope to resign from office, Benedict XVI died on Saturday December 31, 2022 at the age of 95, as officially announced by the Vatican. His funeral, which should be celebrated by his successor in Rome, will be an unprecedented event in the history of the Papacy. Tens of thousands of people could attend the funeral of the former Pope, including heads of state. As a reminder, Pope Francis revealed on Wednesday December 28, 2022 that his predecessor was “seriously ill”, while calling for prayers for him.
“I have the pain to announce to you that the pope emeritus, Benedict XVI, died today at 9:34 a.m., at the Mater Ecclesiae Monastery, in the Vatican. Further information will be communicated to you as soon as possible”, indicated in a press release from the director of the press service of the Holy See, Matteo Bruni, to officially announce the disappearance of Benedict XVI. For the record, the 265th Pope in the history of the Catholic Church was a brilliant theologian, not very comfortable with crowds. In 2013, Joseph Ratzinger, his real name, had justified his resignation by claiming to be too weak to “exercise adequately the ministry” of head of the Church.
Former Pope Benedict XVI died at 95➡️ https://t.co/GSnhFy0aoz pic.twitter.com/v5lVmYzuuX
– The Parisian (@le_Parisien) December 31, 2022
Benedict XVI: frail and visibly weakened, the former Pope moved around in a wheelchair
Currently suffering from knee pain, the 86-year-old Pope Francis could well emulate his predecessor. Indeed, the current sovereign pontiff himself left the door “open” to a possible resignation on his part. A few months before his death, Benedict XVI had appeared increasingly fragile. The former Pope was notably seen moving around with the help of a wheelchair. Although he still continued to receive visitors within the monastery in the Vatican Gardens, where he had retired since his resignation, the former sovereign pontiff had become a frail and visibly weakened man, as the photos of his last visit received, dated December 1, 2022.
POPE BENEDICT XVI © MICHELLE RICCI