What Did Being a Cardinal Mean to Joseph Ratzinger?| National Catholic Register

Archbishop Jerome Lloyd OSJVPosted by

As cardinal deacon, in April 2005 Ratzinger presided over the funeral of John Paul II, the general congregations, and the conclave that then saw his election to the pontificate.

Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger.
Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger. (photo: CamilloPIZ / Public Domain)

Marco Mancini/CNAVaticanJanuary 3, 2023

Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger demonstrated faithfulness, said Pope Paul VI in his address during the consistory of June 27, 1977, in which Cardinal Ratzinger, then archbishop metropolitan of Munich and Freising, was created a cardinal of the Holy Roman Church.

Paul VI pointed to Cardinal Ratzinger’s “theological teaching in prestigious university seats in his Germany and in numerous and worthy publications.”

Cardinal Ratzinger, Paul VI continued, “has made apparent how theological research — in the main way of the ‘fides quaerens intellectum’ — cannot and should not be ever disconnected from the profound, free, creative adherence to the Magisterium, which authentically interprets and proclaims the Word of God; and that now, from the archiepiscopal seat of Munich and Freising he, with so much of our confidence, leads an elect flock on the paths of truth and peace.”

The future Pope Benedict XVI wore the red cassock for almost 28 years and always carried out, with the utmost dedication, the functions of a cardinal called for by canons 349 and 353 of the Code of Canon Law:“The cardinals of the Holy Roman Church constitute a special college which provides for the election of the Roman Pontiff according to the norm of special law. The cardinals assist the Roman Pontiff either collegially when they are convoked to deal with questions of major importance, or individually when they help the Roman Pontiff through the various offices they perform, especially in the daily care of the universal Church,” and “The cardinals especially assist the supreme pastor of the Church through collegial action in consistories in which they are gathered by order of the Roman Pontiff who presides. Consistories are either ordinary or extraordinary.”

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What Did Being a Cardinal Mean to Joseph Ratzinger?| National Catholic Register

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