The 95-year-old Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI has died today Saturday 31, December 2022 at around 9:34 AM in his resident home at the Vatican’s Mater Ecclesiae Monastery. He becomes the longest living person to serve as a pope.
The news of Pope Benedict XVI’s death were released by the Holy See Press Office saying, “With sorrow I inform you that the Pope Emeritus, Benedict XVI, passed away today at 9:34 AM in the Mater Ecclesiae Monastery in the Vatican. Further information will be provided as soon as possible. As of Monday morning, 2 January 2023, the body of the Pope Emeritus will be in Saint Peter’s Basilica so the faithful can bid farewell.”
Pope Benedict XVI was the leader of the Catholic Church between 2005 and 2013. After his retirement, he went to live his last few years at the Vatican’s Mater Ecclesiae Monastery. He was reported to be very ill shortly after Christmas and died just before the New Year.
On December 28, current Pope Francis had stated that the Pope was “very sick” and requested the Church to pray together for him.
“Let us #PrayTogether for Pope Emeritus Benedict who is supporting the Church in silence. Let us ask the Lord to console him and to sustain him in this witness of love for the Church, until the end.”
According to Italian media, Pope Benedict XVI participated in mass on Friday despite being in a critical condition. His devotion to the service of God allowed him to offer his services until the final day of his life on earth.
Since his passing on, the retired pope has been revered, mourned and celebrated by many people around the world. Sky News report that members of the clergy refer to the deceased as the intellectual pope.
LA Times says, “Pope Benedict XVI has been the pope of aesthetics, the pope who plays Mozart on the piano for his own private entertainment and who can write theological books in such lucid, limpid prose that ordinary people can read them for pleasure.”
A Twitter follower of the Vatican says, “Pope Benedict XVI dying in luxury in the sumptuous Vatican. When our very own saintly Fr Bob who has helped so many, should be revered by the wealthy Church as an example of Christianity and be able to have the small luxury of home caring.”
Cardinal Cupich added, “Today we join Pope Francis and Catholics across the world in mourning the death of Pope Benedict XVI who has gone home to the God he served faithfully.”
People have also posted some of the late Pope’s famous quotes on social media. One quote says, “Quite soon, I shall find myself before the final judge of my life.” – Pope Benedict XVI, Letter to the Archdiocese of Munich, 8 February 2022.
The funeral plans for Pope Benedict XVI will be announced by the Holy See Press Office in due time.