VATICAN CITY—On Saturday, December 31, at 9:34 a.m. Central European Standard Time Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI died at the age of 95. The Vatican News reported details of his death stating:

Pope Benedict XVI

“With sorrow, I inform you that the Pope Emeritus, Benedict XVI, passed away today at 9:34 in the Mater Ecclesiae Monastery in the Vatican. Further information will be provided as soon as possible.”

“On April 18, 2005, Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger was elected the 264th successor of Saint Peter and chose the name, Benedict XVI. His papacy testifies to both a scholarly churchman, having extensively studied theology and philosophy and pastoral sensitivity. When elected pope at age 78, he didn’t anticipate traveling the globe given his age and health but quickly realized that the best way to reach the people of God was to go to them. He attended the first World Youth Day in Germany just months after his election. On February 28, 2013, Pope Benedict announced his resignation, becoming the first pope in almost 600 years to resign from the papacy,” stated the U.S. Council of Catholic Bishop with the 264th successor of Peter the Apostle, the first Pope.

Joseph Ratzinger was chosen to be the new Pope by the Cardinals in Vatican City in 2005, following the death of now Saint Pope John Paul II. 

Pope Benedict continued to give encouragement to others through words of inspiration on his Twitter. The caption near Pope Benedict’s profile reads: “Honoring through this account, the extraordinary legacy of one of the greatest and wisest minds in the Catholic Church, Pope Benedict XVI.”

“Kneeling before the Eucharist is a profession of freedom: those who bow to Jesus cannot and must not prostrate themselves before any earthly authority, however powerful. We Christians kneel only before the Blessed Sacrament because we know that the one true God is present in it,” said Pope Benedict XVI on December 30.

“Each of us is the result of a thought of God. Each of us is willed, each of us is loved, each of us is necessary,” said Pope Benedict XVI December 29.

“In the face of the sad view of injustices committed against human life, before and after birth, I make my own Pope John Paul II’s passionate appeal to the responsibility of each and every individual: “respect, protect, love and serve life, every human life!, Pope Benedict XVI posted December 27.