Pope Benedict XVI laid to rest/the funeral was unique

RELIGIONS NEWS AGENCY (REDNA) – The Pope Benedict XVI`s funeral ceremony was held on Thursday at St. Peters Square, Vatican and Benedict IVI laid to rest.

“Religion Media Center” reported fifty thousand people, heads of state and royalty, cardinals and clergy from around the world attended the funeral of Pope Benedict XVI.

After a two hour ceremony, he was laid to rest in a crypt known as the Vatican Grottoes beneath the basilica, next to the tombs of nearly 90 other popes

The Requiem Mass was led by Pope Francis, who arrived in a wheelchair and stood unsteadily during the ceremony.

He spoke in his homily of the burden of serving as a pastor and the need for prayerful devotion and support of the faithful to carry it through.

The number of mourners and the service itself was more low key than the last papal funeral, in part due to the fact that emotions were expressed when Benedict resigned ten years ago.

In his controversial eight year reign as Pope, and 24 years at the Vatican beforehand, his statements and decisions caused anger, but one to one, he is said to have had a gentle nature which created strong personal loyalty.

At the end of the ceremony, muffled cries of Santo Sinito – “Make him a saint now” – could be heard from the crowd.

Afterwards, Cardinal Vincent Nichols, president of the Catholic bishops conference of England and Wales who attended the funeral, told the BBC that there was “a kind of final salute” as the many elderly cardinals who had worked with Benedict remembered his life.

The mass was, he said, “a unique historical event of great emotional depth and stature” and as it was taking place, he was thinking “quite simply, how lovable Benedict was and therefore thanking God for the gifts that he gave us through him”.


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