Nearly ten years after stepping down due to declining health, the Emeritus Pope Benedict XVI has passed away at age 95 in his home at the Vatican.
“With regret I inform you that the Pope Emeritus, Benedict XVI, passed away today at 9:34 in the Mater Ecclesiae Monastery in the Vatican,” the Vatican said in a statement.
After less than eight years in office, Benedict XVI resigned as Pope in 2013, becoming the first pope to do so since Gregory XII in 1415.
At the Mater Ecclesiae monastery inside the Vatican’s gates, Benedict spent his final years.
Pope Francis, who succeeded him, claimed to have frequently visited him there.
The Holy See claimed that although the previous pontiff had been ailing for some time, his condition had gotten worse as he aged.
Pope Francis requested that his final audience of the year on Wednesday at the Vatican “perform a particular prayer for Pope Emeritus Benedict,” who he claimed was in critical condition.
Benedict was one of the oldest popes ever elected when he took office at the age of 78 in 2005. He was born Joseph Ratzinger in Germany.
Mimi Mefo Info