Pope Francis asks for prayers for his “very ill” predecessor, Pope Benedict XVI
The Vatican said Pope Emeritus Benedict “rested well” and participated in mass yesterday afternoon.
“His condition is stable at the moment,” Vatican spokesman Matteo Bruni said in a statement on Friday.
The Vatican said former Pope Benedict’s condition remains “serious” but stable, after Pope Francis said the former pope was “very ill”.
The Vatican had said earlier that the deterioration in his health was due to his “advanced age,” adding that Benedict was under constant monitoring by doctors.
Pope Francis said on Wednesday: “I would like to ask all of you for a special prayer for Pope Emeritus Benedict, who, in silence, sustains the Church. Let us remember him.”
“He is very ill, he asks the Lord to comfort him and support him in this testimony of love for the Church, to the end.”
Benedict, who is 95, became the first pope in nearly 600 years to resign in 2013. He has lived in the Vatican ever since.
Pope at Christmas: Jesus was poor, don’t be power-hungry
Remembering the birth of Jesus in a stable, Pope Francis He rebuked these “predators” of wealth and power at the expense of the weak, including children, in a sermon on Christmas Eve denouncing war, poverty and rapacious consumerism.
In the splendor of St. Peter’s Basilica, Francis presided over the evening collective It was attended by about 7,000 faithful tourists and pilgrims.
In his homily, Francis drew lessons from the humility of Jesus’ first hours of life in the manger.
“While the animals feast in their stalls, the men and women of our world, in their hunger for wealth and power, consume even their neighbours, brothers and sisters,” said the pope. “How many wars have we seen! And how many places, even today, human dignity and freedom are treated with disdain!”
Maryam Zakir HussainDecember 30, 2022 21:34
Vatican: Benedict in stable condition, participated in Mass
Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI was in stable condition on Friday, the Vatican said, after he suffered a deterioration in health and took part in a private Mass in his room, as the faithful in Rome honored “this final period of pilgrimage.”
The Vatican provided a new medical bulletin Friday afternoon stating that Benedict was able to rest well for a second night.
“He also participated in the celebration of the Divine Liturgy in his room yesterday afternoon,” Vatican spokesman Matteo Bruni said in a statement. “His condition is stable for the time being.”
On Wednesday, Pope Francis revealed that his 95-year-old predecessor had been “very ill” and had gone to see him at his home in the Vatican Gardens. Francis called for prayers for Benedict, which led to an outpouring of messages of solidarity from ordinary Catholics and cardinals alike.
In 2013, Benedict became the first pope in 600 years to resign, saying he no longer had the physical or mental strength to lead the then 1.2 billion-member Catholic Church. His resignation paved the way for the election of Francis.
Benedict, who served the Vatican for decades as Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, chose to live out his retirement in seclusion in a converted monastery on the grounds of Vatican City.
The German-born churchman has long been cared for by a team of doctors and his papal family: his secretary, Monsignor Georg Genswein, and a few devoted women who help run the household.
On Friday evening, the Cardinal of Rome, Cardinal Angelo De Donatis, celebrated a private Mass for Benedict at St. John’s in the Lateran Basilica. The massive cathedral was Benedict’s as Bishop of Rome when he was pope.
The cardinal praised Benedict’s qualities, saying he had “always shown great confidence in Providence.”
“As a priest, theologian, bishop, and pope, he has expressed at the same time the strength and sweetness of faith, the essence and simplicity of knowing that when you dream with God, dreams become reality,” de Donatis said in his homily.
Referring to Benedict’s nearly 10 years of retirement from the papacy, de Donatis said that the Pope Emeritus “even in old age, and in sickness, continues to support humanity in offering himself completely.”
The cardinal said that the pope emeritus “has been in deep touch with Pope Francis.”
Some critics of Francis or his predecessor have sought to portray the relationship between retired popes and regents as a kind of rivalry, but de Donatis’ words seem intended to dispel such a perception.
The last words of the sermon resounded like a funeral ode.
“When He wills, God approaches this brother of ours in the slumber of death and says to him, ‘Oh Joseph, get up, Oh Joseph, get up. ”
The cardinal concluded his speech by saying: “It will be Christ and his mother to take him with them and lead him to heaven, where he will be the dream of life because the reality of eternity.”
During the Mass, one of the faithful read a prayer aloud asking God “to support and comfort him with his presence on this last leg of his pilgrimage.”
Benedict indicated that when he died, he would like to be buried in a crypt in the grotto below St. Peter’s Basilica which was once occupied by the tomb of St. John Paul II, which was moved upstairs to the main cathedral in recent years.
At the end of the Mass, De Donatis said that the faithful had entrusted “Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI to the maternal care” of the Mother of Jesus, “because she promised to be close to her children in the moment of trial.”
Maryam Zakir HussainDecember 30, 2022 20:04
Summary: Who is the former Pope Benedict XVI?
Former Pope Benedict, who Pope Francis He said on Wednesday that he was “very ill” and resigned in 2013, the first pope in 600 years to take such a step rather than rule for life.
my colleague Thomas Kingsley has more:
Maryam Zakir HussainDecember 30, 2022 17:30
Bishops urge the faithful to pray for former Pope Benedict
His successor, Pope Francis, said on Wednesday that former pope Benedict, a champion of conservative Catholics who in 2013 became the first pope in 600 years to step down, was “very ill,” and asked church members to pray for him.
Bishops from Europe, the United States and abroad urged the faithful to keep Benedict in mind, after the Vatican followed Francis’ announcement with a statement saying Benedict had suffered a sudden “deterioration” in his health.
“I would like to ask all of you for a special prayer for Pope Emeritus Benedict, who, in silence, supports the Church,” Francis said in a surprise announcement Wednesday made at the end of his weekly public audience.
“Let us remember him. He is very ill, and ask the Lord to comfort him and support him in this testimony of love for the Church, to the end,” Francis said, speaking in Italian.
The Vatican statement said Benedict was receiving ongoing medical care and that his condition was under control.
Francis, who visited the former pope after his proclamation, often praised Benedict, saying it was like having a grandfather in the house. But the presence of two men in white in the Vatican was sometimes annoying.
Conservatives viewed the former pope as their standard-bearer, and some radical fundamentalists even refused to recognize Francis as the legitimate pope.
They have criticized Francis for his more welcoming approach to members of the LGBTQ+ community and Catholics who have divorced and remarried outside the Church, saying both undermine traditional values.
Maryam Zakir HussainDecember 30, 2022 16:56
Former Pope Benedict Stable and Participated in Mass Last Night – Vatican
The Vatican said Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI, whose health had deteriorated, was in a stable condition and was able to take part in a mass in his room.
“Last night the Pope Emeritus was able to rest well,” Vatican spokesman Matteo Bruni said in a statement. He also participated in the celebration of the Divine Liturgy in his room yesterday afternoon, and his condition is currently stable.
On Wednesday, Pope Francis revealed that his 95-year-old predecessor had been “very ill” and had gone to see him at his home in the Vatican Gardens.
Matt MathersDecember 30, 2022 15:04
Pope Francis calls for prayer for the ‘very ill’ parent
Pope Francis has called to pray for his “very ill” predecessor, Benedict.
In remarks to his final audience of the year, he asked people to “make a special prayer” for the ailing former pope.
He was addressing an audience in Paul VI Hall, Vatican City.
Matt MathersDecember 30, 2022 11:13
Summary: Who is the former Pope Benedict XVI?
The former pope was known as “God’s Rottweiler” due to his ultra-conservative views.
my colleague Thomas Kingsley Takes a closer look at Pope Benedict XVI:
Matt MathersDecember 30, 2022 10:00
The same unclear protocols will apply upon Benedict’s death
It’s not clear, an expert said, whether the usual protocols will apply when former Pope Benedict dies.
The Catholic Church has strict rules upon the death of its leader.
Citing old age, Benedict XVI resigned in 2013, becoming the first pope in six centuries to step down from the position.
He’s continued to live in the Vatican, which means two popes have been living side by side for nearly a decade.
Catholic historian John McGreevy said, “We’ve never seen this where a living pope helps bury a dead pope.”
Matt MathersDecember 30, 2022 09:00
Pope Benedict’s condition ‘serious’
Pope Francis revealed on Wednesday that Pope Benedict was “very ill” and had gone to see him at his home in the Vatican where he has lived since his retirement in 2013, sparking fears that he was close to death.
The Vatican said later that Benedict’s health had deteriorated in the last hours, but that the situation was under control as doctors were monitoring him.
Benedict in 2013 became the first pope in 600 years to resign, choosing to live out his retirement in seclusion in a converted monastery in the Vatican Gardens.
Few would have expected his retirement – now in his tenth year – to last longer than his eight-year reign as pope.
Yesterday, Vatican spokesman Matteo Bruni said Benedict “was able to rest well last night, was very lucid and alert, and today, while his condition remains serious, the situation at the moment is stable.”
He said, “Pope Francis renews the call to pray for him and accompany him in these difficult times.”
Namita SinghDecember 30, 2022 08:00
What would happen if Pope Benedict died?
Word of Pope Benedict’s failing health immediately raised questions about what would happen when he died, given the unprecedented reality of having a reigning pope supposedly preside over the funeral of the previous pontiff.
Most Vatican experts predict that any funeral will resemble that of any retired bishop in Rome, albeit with the caveat that there will be official delegations honoring a former head of state, as well as pilgrims from Germany — home of Benedict, Joseph Ratzinger’s ex — and beyond.
Otherwise, while the Vatican newspaper, L’Osservatore Romano, was headlining its editions yesterday with news of Benedict’s health, life went on as usual in the little city-state he calls Pope Benedict and Pope Francis.
Francis had what appeared to be a routine day for the public, meeting his ambassador to Madagascar, the captain of the Swiss Guards and a fellow Jesuit.
In the square, the line of tourists waiting to get to St. Peter’s Basilica wrapped almost entirely around the square, as couples and families stopped to take selfies in front of the life-size nativity scene and Christmas tree erected in the square.
Namita SinghDecember 30, 2022 07:30
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