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Some Top Facts About Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI



As the “Humble worker in the vineyard of the Lord”,  Pope Benedict XVI departs the world, here are some top facts about him

  • Pope Benedict XVI’s full name is Joseph Aloisius Ratzinger, and he was born on April 16, 1927, in Germany.
  • He was born in the German state of Bavaria in the town of Marktl.
  • His father worked as a cop, and his mother’s family was originally from South Tyrol.
  • Joseph grew up in Traunstein and was drafted into the auxiliary anti-aircraft service at the age of 16 near the end of WWII.
  • He studied philosophy and religion at the University of Munich 
  • On June 29, 1951, he was ordained as a priest, and in 1953, he was awarded a Doctorate of Theology.
  • He started instructing in fundamental theology four years later and did so at Freising, Bonn, Munster, and Tubinga from 1959 to 1969.
  • He moved back to Bavaria in 1969, where from 1970 to 1977 he taught dogmatic theology and served as vice president of the University of Regensburg.

Church activity

  • He served as Cardinal Joseph Frings’ adviser at Vatican Council II in 1962. Frings was the Archbishop of Cologne.
  • In 1968 and 1973, he released a number of essays and sermons he had written about Christianity.
  • He was chosen by Pope Paul VI in 1977 to serve as Archbishop of Munich and Freising.
  • In that same year, he received a position in the College of Cardinals.
  • In 1981, Cardinal Ratzinger was appointed head of the Pontifical Biblical Commission, prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, and prefect of the Pontifical International Theological Commission.
  • He was chosen as the College of Cardinals’ Vice Dean in 1998, and he was named its Dean in 2002.

Ascension as the Pope

  • After Pope Paul II’s passing on April 2, 2005, the hunt for his successor began.
  • Cardinal Ratzinger was included in Time magazine’s list of the 100 most influential individuals in the world prior to being elected pope.
  • On the fourth ballot, he was swiftly elected during the pope conclave’s second day.
  • On April 19, 2005, he assumed his official role as pope of the Catholic Church.
  • He described himself as “a simple, humble labourer in the vineyard of the Lord” in his statement delivered from the balcony of St. Peter’s Basilica.
  • It’s fascinating to learn how Pope Benedict XVI chose his name. Benedict, which means “the blessed,” was chosen as a tribute to both Pope Benedict XV and Saint Benedict of Nursia.
  • Pope Benedict XV actively promoted peace while serving as pope during World War I.
  • One of the most influential writings about the monastic life was published by Saint Benedict of Nursia, who also founded the Benedictine monasteries and composed the Rule of Saint Benedict.
  • He brought back several papal accessories, like the traditional red hat and shoes worn in the winter.
  • He was the Pope until he resigned in 2013, at which point he was made pope emeritus. He still wears the white robes, but not the red shoes, the Fisherman’s Ring, or the white shoulder cape.

More Facts About Pope Benedict

  • Since 1730, Pope Benedict XVI was the oldest pope to be elected.
  • He is a native speaker of English, German, French, Italian, Spanish, and Latin.
  • He like Beethoven and Mozart in particular and plays the piano.
  • He is a licensed pilot and occasionally pilots the papal chopper to the vacation home. He never acquired driving skills.
  • He owns two kitties and adores them. He discovered one wandering Rome.
  • His preferred dish is pancake-strip-topped Bavarian potato ravioli.
  • He is the first pope to own an iPod


The information in this article was curated from online sources. NewsWireNGR or its editorial team cannot independently verify all details.

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