Thursday, March 23Welcome

Local Catholic leaders react to death of Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI

Retired pope's ailing health raises questions about what happens next
AP file

Pope Benedict XVI greets a crowd gathered in front of his former private residence in Rome on Wednesday 20 April 2005. Pope and former Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger of Germany left the Vatican on Wednesday for a hasty visit to his former home in Rome. (AP Photo/Andrew Medicini)

Madison, Wisconsin — Local Catholic leaders responded Saturday after the death of Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI.

Benedict was elected pope in 2005 after the death of Pope St. John Paul II and was the first pope to resign since 1415. He died early Saturday morning.

“We are all grateful for his generous service to the Church as a priest, theologian, professor, bishop and cardinal, and for his diocesan leadership of the Faith Doctrine during the Pontificate of Pope St. John Paul II. Thank you for your leadership, it has been a fruitful year as Pope our Pope,” said Bishop Donald Hying of the Diocese of Madison.

Throughout his nearly ten years as Pope, Benedict advocated a return to Catholic values ​​in an increasingly secular world. He encouraged the use of Latin and canonized 45 of hers, including Kateri Her Tekawita, the first native her American woman to be canonized by the church.

“He knew who he was before the Lord, without pretense or trickery,” said Haiing. “May Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI know the eternal reward of his heroic works on earth.”

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