Benedict won the hearts and minds of so many in England, says Bishop

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On learning of the death of Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI on 31 December 2022, the Right Reverend Marcus Stock, Bishop of Leeds, issued this message:

“It is with great sadness that we learned today of the death of our beloved Pope Emeritus, Benedict XVI.

“We recall with great fondness how Benedict won the hearts and minds of so many of the people of our country during his visit to England in September 2010. His ministry and leadership was characterised by a gentleness and serenity that sprang from an intense personal relationship with Our Lord Jesus Christ.

“Benedict’s teaching as the Successor of St Peter and his theological writings have given the Church a profound legacy that will be appreciated ever more deeply both now and in years to come.

“May the humble and selfless soul of Benedict XVI, who ministered as a chief Shepherd of God’s Church, be welcomed into heaven by the Lord whom he loved and served so faithfully on earth.”

Mass for the repose of Benedict’s soul

Bishop Stock will celebrate the 5:30pm Mass at Leeds Cathedral, on Wednesday 4 January 2023, for the repose of the soul of Benedict XVI.

A Requiem Mass which will enable a fuller diocesan participation of clergy and laity will be arranged and published in due course.

The Bishop has encouraged every parish priest to make arrangements for a Mass to be celebrated for the late Pope in their parish on a day and at a time which they consider will enable as many from their community to participate as possible.