June 14, 2024

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Pope Benedict: The former pope’s condition is “serious but stable,” says the Vatican

Pope Benedict: The former pope’s condition is “serious but stable,” says the Vatican


Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI The Vatican said Thursday in an update on the former pope’s health that he is “lucid and alert” but that his condition remains serious.

“He is lucid and very alert and today, while his condition remains serious, at the moment the situation is stable,” Matteo Bruni, director of the Vatican press office, said in a statement.

Pope Francis renews his call to pray for him and accompany him in these difficult times.

Pope Francis He announced Wednesday that his 95-year-old predecessor was “very ill” after his health deteriorated.

“I want to ask you all a special prayer for Pope Emeritus Benedict who supports the Church in his silence. He is very ill,” Francis said during his general audience in the Vatican on Wednesday. “We ask the Lord to comfort and support him in this testimony of love for the Church to the end.”

A Vatican spokesman confirmed later Wednesday that Benedict’s health had worsened “in the last few hours” and that Francis had visited Benedict in the convent of the church in Vatican City.

In 2013, Pope Benedict XVI shocked the world by making the almost unprecedented decision to resign from office, citing his “advanced age.”

Benedict’s announcement marked the first time a pope had stepped down in nearly 600 years. The last pope to resign before his death was Gregory XII, who resigned in 1415 to end a civil war within the Catholic Church in which more than one man claimed to be pope.

Benedict’s health had been failing for some time. In 2020, the Vatican said Benedict suffered From a “painful but not serious condition”, following reports in the German media that he was ill.

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Two years ago, in a Rare public message Published in the Italian newspaper Corriere della Sera, Benedict wrote that “in the slow waning of my physical strength, I am inwardly on a pilgrimage homeward”.

Benedict has been a major force in the Catholic Church for decades.

Born in Germany in 1927, Joseph Ratzinger was ordained a priest in 1951, became a cardinal in 1977, and later served as chief theological advisor to Pope John Paul II. He was elected Pope as the 265th in April 2005, after the death of John Paul II.

Benedict became pope at the height of a global sexual abuse scandal involving Catholic priests, as complaints of sexual abuse and related lawsuits tore apart the church and threatened its moral standing around the world.

His legacy has been clouded by recent scrutiny in his time as Archbishop of Munich and Freising, between 1977 and 1982, after Church-mandated report on abuse By the Catholic clergy there it was published in Jan.

The report found that he had been informed of four cases of sexual abuse of minors – including two during his time in Munich – but had failed to act, and that he had attended a meeting about an abusive priest.

Later, Benedict rejected the allegations, acknowledging that he had attended the meeting but denying that he had deliberately concealed his presence.

In a statement Wednesday, the Survivors Network for Abuse by Priests (SNAP) said many people will have “mixed feelings” about Benedict’s life. “Unfortunately, many victims of clerical abuse are not out of the woods in terms of healing their wounds and getting the justice they deserve,” SNAP wrote.

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