Pope Francis leads funeral of his predecessor Benedict XVI in prestigious ceremony at Vatican


Members of the devoted paid homage to former Pope Benedict XVI Thursday, with a funeral at St. Peter’s Sq. in Vatican Metropolis marked by pomp and custom.

In step with Benedict’s needs, his funeral will likely be “easy,” in accordance with the director of the press workplace of the Holy See, Matteo Bruni. It is going to be the primary event in fashionable instances a pope has presided over his predecessor’s funeral.

Dignitaries and spiritual leaders lined the sq., which may seat roughly 60,000 folks, to participate within the prestigious ceremony. Prime Minister Petr Fiala of the Czech Republic, was amongst these in attendance, in accordance with CNN affiliate CNN Prima.

The ceremony will likely be just like that of a reigning pope however there will likely be some modifications, Bruni stated. Benedict will likely be named pope emeritus through the funeral, and the language of some prayers will likely be totally different as a result of he was not the reigning pope when he died.

The devoted prayed to the rosary as Benedict’s coffin left St. Peter’s Basilica at round 8:45 a.m. native time (2.45 a.m. ET) Thursday.

“God’s devoted folks, gathered right here, now accompanies and entrusts to him the lifetime of the one who was their pastor,” Francis stated as he delivered the homily.

“Like the ladies on the tomb, we too have include the perfume of gratitude and the balm of hope, with the intention to present him as soon as extra the love that’s timeless.

We wish to do that with the identical knowledge, tenderness and devotion that he bestowed upon us over time. Collectively, we wish to say: ‘Father, into your fingers we commend his spirit.’

“Benedict, devoted buddy of the Bridegroom, could your pleasure be full as you hear his voice, now and without end,” Francis added.

Francis began main the mass Thursday morning, when he’s anticipated to offer a homily at 10 a.m. native time (4 a.m. ET).

Benedict’s coffin will then be transported via the Basilica and to the Vatican crypt for the burial, within the first tomb of John Paul II.

The tomb was vacated after John Paul II’s physique and stays had been moved to a chapel contained in the Basilica after he grew to become a saint.

On the time of the burial through the ceremony, a webbing will likely be positioned across the coffin with the seals of the apostolic chamber, the pontifical home and liturgical celebrations. The cypress coffin will likely be positioned inside a zinc coffin that’s soldered and sealed, and subsequently positioned inside a wood coffin, which will likely be buried.

The ceremony is anticipated to finish at round 11:15 a.m. native time (5.15 a.m. ET).

Excessive-profile dignitaries together with Queen Sofia of Spain and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz are set to attend the funeral, alongside US Ambassador to the Holy See Joe Donelly.

Benedict was the primary pontiff in virtually 600 years to resign his place, slightly than maintain workplace for all times, handed away on the age of 95 on December 31 at a monastery in Vatican Metropolis, in accordance with an announcement from the Vatican.

He was elected pope in April 2005, following John Paul II’s dying.

Benedict was recognized to be extra conservative than his successor, Pope Francis, who has made strikes to melt the Vatican’s place on abortion and homosexuality, in addition to doing extra to take care of the sexual abuse disaster that has engulfed the church in recent times and clouded Benedict’s legacy.

The scroll that was put inside Pope Benedict XVI’s coffin, which is a biography of his life and mentions a few of the most essential moments of his tenure, recollects that he “firmly” fought towards pedophilia.

“He firmly fought towards crimes dedicated by members of the clergy towards minors or susceptible individuals, frequently calling the Church to conversion, prayer, penance and purification,” the scroll stated.

His dying prompted tributes from political and spiritual leaders together with US President Joe Biden, British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak and the Dalai Lama.

About 200,000 mourners, together with Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni and President Sergio Mattarella, paid their respects to the previous pontiff earlier this week throughout his lying-in-state in St. Peter’s Basilica.

The general public viewing of Benedict completed Wednesday, earlier than an intimate spiritual ceremony throughout which gadgets together with cash and medals minted over his tenure and a scroll concerning the preach had been positioned into his sealed cypress coffin forward of the funeral.

Francis paid tribute to his predecessor throughout an viewers on the Vatican Wednesday.

“I would really like us to hitch with these right here beside us who’re paying their respects to Benedict XVI, and to show my ideas to him, an amazing grasp of catechesis,” he stated.

“Might he assist us rediscover in Christ the enjoyment of believing and the hope of residing.”

Supply – CNN

– With enter from companies

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