February 12th, 2013
05:30 AM ET

From police officer's son to pope: The life of Benedict XVI

By Greg Botelho, CNN

(CNN) - Before he was Pope Benedict XVI, before he earned the nickname "Cardinal No" as the enforcer of church doctrine, he was Joseph Ratzinger - the son of Maria and police officer Joseph Ratzinger, learning about life and God in Germany between two world wars.

According to Roman Catholic doctrine, Benedict is not only the church's leader but God's representative on earth and infallible.

He is also a man - one who savors his meat and potatoes, an accomplished pianist who loves Mozart, and a teacher who for years commanded university classes. His humanity became apparent Monday, when the Vatican announced he'd resign at month's end "because of advanced age," becoming the first pope in nearly 600 years to do so.

- A. Hawkins

Filed under: Pope Benedict XVI

soundoff (11 Responses)
  1. Tennie Swarb

    A perfect part-time business would have to be very easy to start, require little time and money and no technical expertise, be easy to maintain with just a few hours a week and have a proven track record with a high probability of success.-*`-

    Enjoy your day

    August 13, 2013 at 7:14 pm |
  2. boze
    February 21, 2013 at 1:29 pm |
  3. Bojan Debil

    I've made $84,000 so far this year working online and I'm a full time student. Im using an online business opportunity I heard about and I've made such great money. It's really user friendly and I'm just so happy that I found out about it. The potential with this is endless. Heres what I do, Rich45.cøm

    February 12, 2013 at 1:09 pm |
    • trollalert

      Click the report abuse link to get rid of this garbage.

      February 12, 2013 at 1:22 pm |
  4. ..

    "Cardinal NO" problem covering up pedophile rapists.

    February 12, 2013 at 10:35 am |
  5. Peter Paul Igu

    Where the next Pope should come from must not be instigated by any press, because it is not their business. Even if the next Pope were to come from Africa or Latin America this will not solve the problems of these regions.Let God do his divine work through the 118 Cardinals when the appropriate time for electing the next Pope comes. Whoever will be elected will the Head of the Catholic Church and will NOT change the established ORDER of the Catholic Church.

    February 12, 2013 at 8:10 am |
  6. Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things

    Prayer changes things

    February 12, 2013 at 7:27 am |
    • hal 9001

      I'm sorry, "Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things", but your repeated assertions regarding atheism and prayer are unfounded. Using my Idiomatic Expression Equivalency module (IEE), the expression that best matches the degree to which your repeated unfounded assertions may represent truths is: "EPIC FAIL".

      February 12, 2013 at 8:42 am |
    • Jesus

      Prayer does not; you are such a LIAR. You have NO proof it changes anything! A great example of prayer proven not to work is the Christians in jail because prayer didn't work and their children died. For example: Susan Grady, who relied on prayer to heal her son. Nine-year-old Aaron Grady died and Susan Grady was arrested.

      An article in the Journal of Pediatrics examined the deaths of 172 children from families who relied upon faith healing from 1975 to 1995. They concluded that four out of five ill children, who died under the care of faith healers or being left to prayer only, would most likely have survived if they had received medical care.

      The statistical studies from the nineteenth century and the three CCU studies on prayer are quite consistent with the fact that humanity is wasting a huge amount of time on a procedure that simply doesn’t work. Nonetheless, faith in prayer is so pervasive and deeply rooted, you can be sure believers will continue to devise future studies in a desperate effort to confirm their beliefs!

      February 12, 2013 at 10:47 am |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.