Pope Benedict XVI, Pope Emeritus, Passes Away at Age of 95 | The Vatican News

Pope Benedict XVI, Pope Emeritus, Passes Away at Age of 92 | The Vatican News

Details of Pope Benedict's Death

Pope Benedict XVI, the former head of the Catholic Church, has died at the age of 95. Benedict XVI, born Joseph Ratzinger in 1927, was elected pope in 2005, becoming the 265th pontiff of the Catholic Church.

He served until 2013, when he became the first pope in almost 600 years to resign from the top position of the Catholic Church. Following his retirement, Pope Benedict remained in the Vatican, living in a monastery within the walls of the city state and still received all the due titles as a former pope.

In a statement released by the Vatican, Pope Francis said he had learned of his predecessor's death with "sadness" and offered his prayers for Benedict and his family. The Vatican spokesperson, Matteo Bruni, said that the Pope Emeritus died at 9:34 a.m. local time on Saturday in his residence in the Vatican.

"With sorrow I inform you that the Pope Emeritus, Benedict XVI, passed away today at 9:34 in the Mater Ecclesiae Monastery in the Vatican," a statement from the Vatican said.

The cause of the Pope's death has not been disclosed but there is an indication that Benedict XVI died from old age. Pope Francis on Wednesday, 28 December, told pilgrims during his weekly audience at the Vatican that his predecessor's health was deteriorating "due to advancing age".
Benedict XVI was an influential figure within the Catholic Church and a staunch defender of traditional Catholic teaching. During his papacy he had a number of notable initiatives, such as his visit to the United States in 2008, and his encyclical Caritas in Veritate (Love in Truth).

Pope Benedict also worked to strengthen the Church's ties with other Christian denominations and invited both Jews and Muslims to join in dialogue with the Catholic Church. He sought to reach out to people of other religions. His papacy was, however, marked by a series of conservative stances on social issues, including abortion, homosexuality, and divorce.

He was known for his love of books and culture, and his writings have been widely revered. The late Pope Benedict wrote over 60 books and numerous documents including three encyclicals such as the Caritas in Veritate.

The Vatican reports that the Pope's body will lie in state in St. Peter's Basilica from Monday morning, while his burial will be announced soon. His death marks the end of an era in the Catholic Church and the religious world.

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