The Vatican announced, on Saturday, that the funeral ceremonies of Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI will be held on Thursday, January 5, presided over by Pope Francis.
The Associated Press quoted the Vatican as saying that “Pope Francis will preside over the funeral of retired Pope Benedict VI, Thursday, in St. Peter’s Square.”
Today, the Vatican announced the death of Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI, the first pope to resign in 600 years, at the age of 95.
“We sadly inform you that Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI passed away today at 09:34 local time (08:34 GMT) in the Convent of the Church in the Vatican,” Vatican spokesman Matteo Bruni said in a statement.
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The resignation of the German Pope Benedict XVI (his real name is Joseph Ratzinger) on February 11, 2013, is the first of its kind since the resignation of Pope Gregor XII in 1415.
Benedict explained at the time that he made this decision because he lacked the physical strength needed to run the Catholic Church effectively.
After his abdication of the papal throne, Benedict XVI was honored with the title of titular Bishop of Rome of the Latin Church, to continue to wear the white robe.