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Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI: A Life in Pictures

Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI: A Life in Pictures

Pope Benedict XVI holds a candle as he arrives to celebrate a Mass in St. Peter’s basilica at the Vatican, Feb. 2, 2006. (photo: Patrick Hertzog / AFP via Getty Images)


Joseph Ratzinger was a Christian for 95 years, a priest for 71 years and pope for almost eight years.

Early Years (1927-1977)

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Joseph Aloisius Ratzinger was born April 16, 1927, in the Bavarian town of Marktl am Inn.(Photo: Kerstin Joensson)
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LEFT: Photo taken in 1943 during World War II shows Joseph Ratzinger as a Luftwaffenhelfer (Luftwaffe auxiliary). RIGHT: Photo taken in 1952 near Ruhpolding, shows Father Joseph Ratzinger (c) during an open-air Mass, one year after his 1951 priestly ordination.(Photo: STF)


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Pope St. John XXIII arrives in St. Peter’s Basilica on Oct. 11, 1962, for the opening Mass of the first session of the Second Vatican Council, where Father Joseph Ratzinger served as a peritus (expert).


Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger (1977-2005)

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Pope Paul VI places the cardinalatial ring on the finger of Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger on June 29, 1977, in St. Peter’s Basilica (Photo: Pool)1977 AP


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Pope St. John Paul II stands with Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger of Munich after naming him prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith in 1981.


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Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger presents the encyclical ‘Fides et Ratio’ of Pope St. John Paul II during a Vatican press conference, Oct. 15, 1998.(Photo: Gerard Julien)2003 AFP


Pope Benedict XVI (2005-2013)

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Pope Benedict XVI appears on the balcony of St. Peter’s Basilica after his election as pope on April 19, 2005.(Photo: Patrick Hertzog)2011 AFP


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Pope Benedict XVI celebrates Mass at the Marienfeld in Kerpen, Germany, on Aug. 21, 2005, as part of World Youth Day.(Photo: Pool)


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Pope Benedict XVI signs his second encyclical, ‘Spe Salvi’ (Saved Through Hope), on Nov. 30, 2007, at the Vatican.(Photo: L’Osservatore Romano)2007 AFP


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Pope Benedict XVI greets pilgrims at the end of his weekly general audience in St. Peter’s Square on May 4, 2011, soon after presiding over the beatification of his predecessor, John Paul II, on May 1.(Photo: Vincenzo Pinto)2011 AFP


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Three former Anglican bishops — from left, Reverend John Broadhurst, Reverend Andrew Burnham and Reverend Keith Newton — are pictured at Westminster Cathedral on Jan. 15, 2011, in London. Their ordination marks the inauguration of the Anglican Ordinariate.(Photo: Carl de Souza)2011 AFP


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Pope Benedict XVI meets with former Cuban President Fidel Castro at the Embassy of the Holy See on March 29, 2012, in Havana, Cuba.(Photo: L’Osservatore Romano / Pool)2012 Getty Images

Pope Emeritus (2005-2022)

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Pope Benedict XVI’s helicopter flies past St. Peter’s Basilica on Feb. 28, 2013, on the day of his resignation.(Photo: Alberto Pizzoli)2013 AFP


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Pope Francis welcomes Benedict XVI back to the Vatican on May 2, 2013, in the residence set up for Benedict’s retirement. ANSA


Pope emeritus Benedict XVI celebrates his 90th birthday (April 16) with Bavarian delegates in Vatican City on April 17, 2017. Also in attendance was Monsignor Georg Ratzinger, Benedict’s 93-year-old brother, and Archbishop George Gänswein.


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Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI sits in a wheelchair at the airport in Munich, Germany, where he was visiting his ailing brother, before his return to Rome on June 22, 2020.(Photo: Sven Hoppe)


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‘From my childhood,’ said Benedict XVI, ‘I was very much taken with the story that a bear had attacked and killed the horse on the saint was riding across the Alps. Corbinian severely scolded the bear and he punished him by loading him down with all his baggage and making him carry it all the way to Rome. So the bear, carrying the baggage of the saint, had to go to Rome. And only there was he allowed by the saint to go free.’ (Photo: Tiziana Fabi)



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