Collection on Pope Benedict XVI
Scope and Contents
The Collection on Pope Benedict XVI includes materials related to the life and papacy of Pope Benedict XVI. The collection consists of memorabilia from the Pope's visit to the United States in 2008, primarily through a piece of the carpet from Mass celebrated in Yankee Stadium by the Pope.
Conditions Governing Access
Conditions Governing Use
All materials available in this collection (unless otherwise noted) are the property of the Monsignor William Noé Field Archives & Special Collections Center and Seton Hall University, which reserves the right to limit access to or reproduction of these materials. Reproduction of materials or content is subject to United States copyright restrictions and may be subject to federal or state privacy regulations. Permission to publish exact reproductions must be obtained from the Director of the Archives and Special Collections Center.
Biographical / Historical
Pope Benedict XVI was head of the Roman Catholic Church from 7 May 2005 until his resignation effective 28 February 2013, the first pope to resign since the 15th century.
Born Joseph Aloisius Ratzinger on 16 April 1927 in Bavaria, Germany, he was conscripted into the German army during World War II while still in school in 1943. After the war, he was ordained a priest on 29 June 1951. He was a professor of theology at the Universities of Bonn, Munich Tubingen, and Regensburg, participated in the Second Vatican Council, in which he was seen as a reformer, and wrote a number of books and articles. While he consistently defended the work of the Second Vatican Council, his later views became more in line with some conservative views. Fr. Ratzinger was appointed Archbishop of Munich and Freising on 24 March 1977 by Pope Paul VI, and was later appointed the Prefect of the Sacred Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith by Pope John Paul II on 25 November 1981.
After the death of Pope John Paul II in 2005, Cardinal Ratzinger was elected Pope on 19 April 2005, and celebrated his inauguration on 24 April 2005, choosing the name Benedict in honor of Pope Benedict XV, who was pope during World War I and advocated for peace. At 78, he was the oldest man to have been elected pope since the 18th century. During his papacy, he emphasized objective and moral truths in theology, rejecting relativist views as a central problem to the Church in the 21st century, and the return to fundamental Christian values. He revived a number of traditions of ceremony and dress in the papacy and the Church at large, including allowing the Tridentine Mass (also called the Latin Mass) to be celebrated without the permission of the bishop of a diocese.
In 2008, Pope Benedict XVI visited the United States, a visit officially called the "Apostolic Visit to the United States of America and to the Seat of the United Nations," which was the first official papal visit to the United States since the U.S. established full diplomatic relations with the Holy See in 1984. During the visit, the pope celebrated mass at Yankee Stadium in New York City and at Nationals Park in Washington, D.C., addressed the United Nations in New York City, and met with President George W. Bush in Washington, D.C. The visit lasted from 15 April - 20 April 2008.
On 11 February 2013, the Vatican announced that Pope Benedict XVI would resign as pope, citing reasons of health and advanced age. This announcement was generally unexpected; the last pope to reisgn was Pope Gregory XII in 1415, and the last pope to resign of his own volition was Pope Celestine V in 1294. Upon his resignation effective 28 February 2013, Pope Benedict XVI retains the address "His Holiness" and the title of Pope Emeritus. He lives in the Mater Ecclesiae monastery in the Vatican Gardens near St Peter's.
Language of Materials
Pope Benedict XVI was head of the Roman Catholic Church from 7 May 2005 until his resignation effective 28 February 2013, the first pope to resign since the 15th century. Pope Benedict XVI visited the United States in 2008 and celebrated Mass at Yankee Stadium in New York City. The Collection on Pope Benedict XVI includes materials related to the life and papacy of Pope Benedict XVI. The collection consists of memorabilia from the Pope's visit to the United States in 2008, primarily through a piece of the carpet from Mass celebrated in Yankee Stadium by the Pope.
Immediate Source of Acquisition
Collection is the gift to the Archives and Special Collections Center in 2008. Terms of accession unknown.
Collection was processed by the Archives and Special Collections Center, 2008. Re-processed and finding aid created by Erica Garcia and Tracy M. Jackson as part of the Overhaul Project collection survey, 2013.
- Collection on Pope Benedict XVI, 2008
- Tracy M. Jackson
- Description rules
- Describing Archives: A Content Standard
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- Finding aid written in English.