Benedict XVI not ‘isolated’ although ‘no public life’—Vatican spokesman | Inquirer News

Benedict XVI not ‘isolated’ although ‘no public life’—Vatican spokesman

/ 09:12 AM February 11, 2014

In this file photo provided by the Vatican newspaper L’Osservatore Romano on Feb. 11, 2013, Pope Benedict XVI reads a document in Latin where he announces his resignation, during a meeting of Vatican cardinals, at the Vatican. It was a holiday at the Vatican and Pope Benedict XVI was speaking in Latin at an arguably boring ceremony announcing new saints, so few people were paying much attention. But what Benedict said a year ago Tuesday changed the course of the 2,000-year-old Catholic Church and paved the way for the historic papacy of Pope Francis. In his soft voice and in a Latin that the cardinals present strained to understand, Benedict announced that he no longer had the “strength of mind and body” to be pope and would retire at the end of the month, the first pope to step down in more than half a millennium. AP

VATICAN CITY—Pope emeritus Benedict XVI, who a year ago became the first pontiff to resign since the Middle Ages, is not “isolated” even though he does not appear in public, Vatican spokesman Federico Lombardi said on Monday.

Benedict “lives discreetly without a public life but that does not mean his is an isolated life,” Lombardi, who was spokesman also during Benedict’s troubled eight-year reign, told Vatican Radio in an interview.


Lombardi said the former pope’s daily life in his home—a former monastery within the Vatican City’s walls—is made up of “prayer, reflection, reading, writing to respond to the letters he receives and discussions and meetings with people who are close to him.”


“It’s a normal social life including with his successor, Pope Francis, whom he meets sometimes,” he said, adding: “Then there are forms of communication including phone calls and messages sent to him.”

Lombardi said that for the Catholic Church, Benedict is “the grand old man, the sage, even the saint.”

“He really gives an impression of great spiritual serenity. He has kept his usual smile,” he said.

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TAGS: Benedict XVI, Pope, Religion, Vatican

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