Mint Stamps Honor Pope Benedict's Inauguration
About two weeks after Pope John Paul II’s passing, the College of Cardinals met to elect a new Pope. On April 19, 2005, they elected Cardinal Joseph Alois Ratzinger. Though he was looking forward to a peaceful retirement, he was reminded of his sermon for Pope John Paul II’s funeral. At the funeral, Ratzinger praised his predecessor for always following the Lord’s call, even to places he never wanted to go. Cardinal Ratzinger’s confidence was quickly restored, and he soon happily embraced his new position as Pope.
One of the new Pope’s first duties was to select an appropriate name for himself. Ratzinger chose Benedict, Latin for “the blessed.” He chose the name to honor Pope Benedict XV and St. Benedict of Nursia.
Pope Benedict’s inauguration took place on April 24, 2005. After paying his respects at the Tomb of St. Peter, the Pope and Cardinals went to Saint Peter’s Square for the Inauguration Mass. Here, Pope Benedict received the pallium (a wool band worn around the neck) and the Ring of the Fisherman (all Popes are considered successors of St. Peter, who was a fisherman). In the homily of his inaugural mass, Benedict stressed the importance of allowing Christ into one’s life, saying, “Open wide the doors to Christ – and you will find true life.”
Now you can add a piece of Pope Benedict's inauguration to your collection with this neat mint sheet.