It is widely understood that Pope Francis is not a big vacation guy, preferring to spend his Summer in the Domus Sanctae Marthae where he lives. But as a heat wave breaks records across Europe, Emeritus Pope Benedict XVI decided to visit the cooler papal estate of Castel Gandolfo on Thursday.
A large part of the reason news organizations are willing to pay the exorbitant costs of traveling aboard the papal plane with Pope Francis has nothing to do with the trip itself – it’s about the press conference at the end.
Cardinal Dolan, the archbishop of New York and former head of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops’ (USCCB) pro-life committee, delivered the keynote address at the Cardinal O’Connor Conference on Life at Georgetown University on Saturday.
As one of the major protagonists of the Francis papacy – and arguably of the Catholic Church since Vatican II – German Cardinal Walter Kasper argues, “there is no real substantial difference between Pope Benedict and Pope Francis.”
On the eve of the fifth anniversary of Pope Francis’ election, retired Pope Benedict XVI defended the continuity of the Church’s teaching under his successor and dismissed those who criticize the pope’s theological foundations.
The Vatican has denied that retired Pope Benedict XVI has a degenerative neurological disease or paralyzing condition after his brother, 94-year-old Msgr. Georg Ratzinger, told a magazine that Pope Benedict had a debilitating disease.
Recent popes have had a special affection for Our Lady of Fatima, but no pope’s connection can match that of St. John Paul II.
A bit of Bavaria, including German beer and pretzels, came to the Vatican to help celebrate retired Pope Benedict XVI’s 90th birthday.
In a book-length interview with the German author Peter Seewald, Pope Benedict said that when he resigned he had the “peace of someone who had overcome difficulty” and “could tranquilly pass the helm to the one who came next.”
As he prays in his house in the Vatican Gardens and especially as he ages, retired Pope Benedict XVI, now 89, said he finds many Scripture passages “more challenging in their greatness and gravity.”