Benedict XVI, theologian-pope completes five years
That’s why over the past five years Benedict XVI has continued the line of work that John Paul II started. World Youth Day in Cologne, the first big gathering of Benedict XVI just four months after he was elected pope, was one clear example of that. Benedict XVI decided to continue in the steps of John Paul II and gathered youth from all over the world in Sydney in 2008.
In December of 2005 Benedict XVI’s first encyclical was already available in every part of the world: “Deus Caritas est” which was then followed by “Spe Salvi” in 2007 and “Caritas in Veritate” in 2009.
The first official extensive trip of Joseph Ratzinger took as Benedict XVI, was to the home of his predecessor in Poland. In May of 2006 Benedict XVI visited the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp, where he profoundly lamented the crimes committed there by the Nazis.
Benedict XVI“To speak in this place of horror, in this place where unprecedented mass crimes were committed against God and man, is almost impossible - and it is particularly difficult and troubling for a Christian, for a Pope from Germany.”
Over the last five years Benedict XVI has visited a total of 13 countries including Turkey, Brazil and Israel where he prayed in front of the Western Wall of Jerusalem.
The pope has met with different people from all over the world. Like the chief rabbis from the synagogues of Cologne, New York and Rome. To obtain unity with different Christian churches, Benedict XVI created the figure of the Anglican Ordinariate which is the legal structure for the groups of Anglicans who want to join the Catholic Church.
Benedict XVI has started a zero tolerance policy for sexual abuse. That’s why he convened all of the bishops of Ireland at the Vatican in March of 2010 and published a letter to Catholics of the country telling them that all of the cases should be reported to the civil and Church authorities.
During his weekly general audiences Benedict XVI, an eminent theologian and old university professor, often calls on pilgrims to use all elements of reason to understand faith and search for the Truth.
Benedict XVI“Whenever a theological dispute arises, everyone, and in a particular way the Magisterium, has a particular responsibility to safeguard the integrity of the faith.”
For five years, 83 year old Benedict XVI, continues to help Christians and non-Christians with his strength and intellect.