Benedict XVI: The primary pope to resign in over 600 years

In February 2013, the then Pope Benedict XVI shocked the world. He was the primary pope since 1415 to step down from his function, main the world’s 1.2 billion Catholics.

He was then identified by a brand new title, ’emeritus’, which suggests ‘retired’ in English.

Who was Pope Benedict, the primary German Pope in a thousand years?

Benedict was the primary German Pope to be elected head of the Catholic Church in 1,000 years when he succeeded John Paul II in April 2005.

Recognized then as German Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, he turned the 265th head of the Roman Catholic Church and selected the identify Benedict XVI.

His appointment got here after he led the Vatican Congregation for the Doctrine of the Religion from 1982 to 2005.

On the time, Benedict was described by a cardinal as a “secure pair of arms,” however his eight-year papacy was marred by missteps and scandals.

Joseph Ratzinger was born right into a Catholic household on April 16, 1927 in Marktl am Inn, a small village in south-eastern Germany. Right here, close to the Austrian border, he spent most of his youth.

He typically referred to himself as a “Mozartian” and loved taking part in the piano all through his life.

After his 14th birthday in 1941, amid hostilities in Germany, Ratzinger joined the Hitler Youth

Membership within the Nazi group was a authorized requirement on the time, and {the teenager} stayed within the Hitler Youth to keep away from tuition charges, later enlisting for auxiliary anti-aircraft service on the finish of World Struggle II.

Ratzinger was ultimately exonerated and even embraced by some Jews – he known as the Holocaust a “darkish time” in his life.

After finding out philosophy and theology on the College of Munich, he was ordained a priest in 1951 collectively together with his brother Georg.

abuse scandals

Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger was then Archbishop of Munich from 1977 to 1982.

This era of his life later turned significantly scrutinized due to the widespread allegations of sexual abuse inside the Catholic Church.

Although his legacy was marred by the scandal, Benedict was liable for reversing the Vatican’s strategy to clerical abuse.

He was the primary pope to satisfy with abuse victims and instructed the church to stroll a path of humility by asking for forgiveness. In 2001, he ordered all instances to be despatched to his workplace for processing after seeing accused bishops being moved from ward to ward and never being punished.

Within the final two years of his preach, Benedict eliminated almost 400 monks for abuse.

However in 2018, a report commissioned by the church concluded that between 1946 and 2014, no less than 3,677 individuals have been molested by clergy in Germany.

One other long-awaited report then accused Benedict of manhandling 4 allegations of sexual abuse within the Archdiocese of Munich. He was criticized for failing to take away monks even after they’d been criminally convicted.

In February, Benedict requested for forgiveness for “severe errors” however didn’t admit any private wrongdoing.

At first of his tenure, Benedict XVI was confronted with different criticism and controversy.

In 2006, only a 12 months after his election, he brought on a stir when he claimed that Islam brings solely evil to the world. After days of protests, Benedict stated he was “deeply sorry” and that his speech had been misunderstood.

Lower than three years later, he additionally angered the Jews by rehabilitating 4 ultra-traditionalist bishops, together with a Holocaust denier.

In 2012, the “Vatileaks” scandal that uncovered monetary corruption and extortion additionally shook Benedict’s papacy.

In a surprising announcement in February 2013, the then 86-year-old stated he lacked the “willpower and physique” to steer the church and stated goodbye.

In his later years, Benedict turned more and more frail as he devoted his post-papal life to prayer and meditation.

Francis, who visited the previous pope shortly after his common viewers on Wednesday (December 28), has typically praised Benedict, saying it is like having a grandfather in the home.

One of many final identified pictures of Benedict was taken on December 1st as he met the winners of a theologian prize named after him.