UN Statement on the passing of Pope Benedict XVI

Statement by the Secretary-General on the passing of His Holiness Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI 

It is with great sadness that I have learned of the passing of His Holiness Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI. 

We remember Pope Benedict as a humble man of prayer and study.  

Principled in his faith, tireless in his pursuit of peace, and determined in his defence of human rights, he was a spiritual guide to millions across the world and one of the leading academic theologians of our time. 

We recall his 2008 visit and address to the United Nations and his appeal for “building international relations in a way that allows every person and every people to feel they can make a difference.”   

His powerful calls for solidarity with marginalized people everywhere and his urgent appeals to close the widening gap between rich and poor are more relevant than ever. 

I offer my deepest condolences to Catholics and others around the world who were inspired by his life of prayer and tenacious commitment to non-violence and peace.

New York, 31 December 2022