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Pope Emeritus Benedict in good health, relieved to be retired

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
April 24th, 2013
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Pope Emeritus Benedict says he's happy and relieved that he is no longer pope and that he is in good heatlh. The report comes from his older brother, Georg Ratzinger, published in the Telegraph.

LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Father Georg Ratzinger told the Daily Telegraph that Pope Emeritus Benedict was "very happy" to be living at Castel Gandalfo and that he is "relieved" to no longer be head of the Church.

The older Georg Ratzinger spent Benedict's birthday with him on April 16.

Georg told the Telegraph that his brother, "still suffers the problems of the Church, but is really relieved to no longer have the weight of the Church on his shoulders."

He also clarified that Benedict does not have any illnesses that should alarm the faithful. "He is now very old, he does not have any particular illness, but he is weakening due to his age," Georg told the reporter.

The two brothers are very close and reportedly speak to one another by phone each week. Georg said he knew of his brother's plan to resign months before it Benedict made it public.

Pope Emeritus Benedict became the first pope to resign in over 600 years. He has presided over a Church best by scandal, intrigue, and controversy. Despite these challenges, Benedict handled them as well as any elderly pontiff could, but wisely chose to resign when he felt he could no longer keep pace with his duties.

Benedict has spent the time since his resignation at the Papal summer villa at Castel Gandolfo, and is waiting for a new home to complete renovation at the Vatican.

Once complete, Benedict will reside sequestered from the public, in a Vatican monastery where he will devote his life to prayer.

Meanwhile, excitement continues to build over the pontificate of Pope Francis who has done much to energize the Church by virtue of his youth, energy, and integrity.

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