Politics

Pope Benedict XVI, 2005-2013

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Who will be the next Pope?

Credit:

Franco Origlia

Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger was elected pope in 2005 at the age of 78, making him one of the oldest new pontiffs in history.

Just under eight years later, Pope Benedict XVI announced: "After having repeatedly examined my conscience before God, I have come to the certainty that my strengths, due to an advanced age, are no longer suited to an adequate exercise of the Petrine ministry."

He will resign the position on February 28, 2013. In the final weeks of his papacy, we look back on his time in office.

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    Joseph Ratzinger, then a German cardinal, with his predecessor Pope John Paul II in Vatican City, October 2003.

    Credit:

    PAOLO COCCO

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    Cardinal Ratzinger was elected pope on April 19, 2005. Here, the new Pope Benedict XVI waves to the crowd in St. Peter's Square.

    Credit:

    Arturo Mari-Pool

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    One of the German-born Pope's first official trips was to Poland, where he visited the Nazi death camp at Auschwitz in May 2006.

    Credit:

    JANEK SKARZYNSKI

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    With President George W. Bush in Washington DC in April 2008. Pope Benedict XVI was the first pope to visit the US in almost 30 years, and only the second to visit the White House.

    Credit:

    SAUL LOEB

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    Pope Benedict XVI addresses the General Assembly at the United Nations headquarters in New York, April 18, 2008.

    Credit:

    Spencer Platt

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    On December 24, 2009, a woman threw herself at Pope Benedict XVI and dragged him to the ground as he entered St Peter's Basilica to celebrate Christmas Eve mass.

    Credit:

    VATICAN TV

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    Pope Benedict XVI with Queen Elizabeth II in Edinburgh, Scotland, September 16, 2010. It was the first state visit to the UK by a Pontiff.

    Credit:

    Dave Thompson - WPA Pool

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    The Pope dons a Mexican hat for his visit to Guanajuato State, Mexico, March 25, 2012.

    Credit:

    Ronaldo Schemidt

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    The Pope went on to make a historic visit to Cuba, where he gave mass in Havana's Plaza de la Revolución.

    Credit:

    L'Osservatore Romano Vatican-Pool

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    Meeting Fidel Castro, March 29, 2012.

    Credit:

    L'Osservatore Romano Vatican-Pool

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    Pope Benedict XVI became the first pope with a Twitter account, using the handle @pontifex. Here, he types his first tweet from the Vatican on December 12, 2012.

    Credit:

    VINCENZO PINTO

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    Delivering what would be his final 'State of the World' address at the Vatican, January 7, 2013.

    Credit:

    Stefano Carofei - Vatican Pool

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    In recent months, the 85-year-old Pope has appeared in public walking with a cane and supported by his assistants.

    Credit:

    ANDREAS SOLARO

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    The Vatican announced on February 11, 2013, that Pope Benedict XVI had decided to resign at the end of the month due to his "advanced age."

    Credit:

    Franco Origlia

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    Who will be the next Pope?

    Credit:

    Franco Origlia