BY Ryan McDougall | April 16 | comments icon 0 COMMENTS     print icon print

pope benedict

Pope emeritus Benedict celebrates 93rd birthday

Today is Pope emeritus Benedict's 93rd birthday, though he will celebrate it more quietly this year due to COVID-19.

Most years, the pope emeritus goes back to his Bavarian roots when celebrating his birthday, enjoying cold beers and eating pretzels, often with his older brother, Georg, who is 96.

His brother usually comes to visit him on his birthday, though this year his birthday will be spent inside the Vatican at his residence, the Mater Ecclesiae Monastery.

He will be joined by his closest associates, and the lockdown has meant it is uncertain if Pope Francis will visit him.

He has another anniversary on April 19, which will mark 15 years since he was named pope.

Legacy

His papacy lasted eight years, during which time he visited over 20 countries, published three encyclicals and three books.

In his even years as pope emeritus, he has become more frail with age.

He remains in his residence, but still welcomes new cardinals after each consistory.

The most recent of which was in October last year, when 13 new cardinals met him at his residence.

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