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Pope Emeritus Benedict says he is ready to die
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Pope Emeritus Benedict is ready for his passing, according to a letter he wrote to a fellow priest. The Pontiff Emeritus is now 94 and resides in a Vatican monastery.
LOS ANGELES, CA (California Network) - Pope Emeritus Benedict recently sent a letter to a German priest in which he expressed his readiness to die. The letter, sent on October 2, was a response to the news that one of his friends had passed; Rev. Gerhard Winkler, a Cistercian priest, was a friend and fellow academic of Benedict.
"Of all my colleagues and friends, he was the closest to me," Benedict explained in his letter. He continued, "Now he has reached the afterlife, where many friends certainly await him. I hope I can join them soon."
While most people hope not to die, it is common for people of faith to embrace the hour of death. For Christians, death is not the end of life, but a transition into another. The Catechism defines death as the separation of the soul from the body. Although the body is inanimate, the soul continues to live. It is like going to sleep in this life to awaken in another.
Pope Emeritus Benedict is 94, and his health is poor. It has been since he was pontiff, and was a prime reason for his resignation. That decision was the first such made in 600 years by a reigning pontiff. Benedict explained he did not feel he had the health or mental capacity to lead the Church anymore. His resignation made way for Pope Francis.
It is impossible to predict when Pope Emeritus Benedict will be allowed to leave this life and enter the next with his friends. But when it does happen, we may rest assured he will welcome the final hour, and be received into the next life by our Lord Jesus Christ.
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