A top Philippine churchman paid tribute to the late Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI, honoring him “for courageously witnessing to the Gospel in our modern world marred by fractures and skepticism”.
Cardinal Jose Advincula of Manila said the retired pontiff “prophetically warned us against the ‘dictatorship of relativism’, from which our post-truth world is now suffering”.
“He proclaimed the truth of the Gospel through the gift of his eloquence, but also more poignantly, through his humility and silence,” Advincula said.
The cardinal, whom Benedict XVI appointed as archbishop of Capiz in 2011, asked Catholics to learn and follow the teachings and the life of Benedict XVI.
“Let us honor the memory of Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI by learning from his preaching and following his example of Christian life,” Advincula said.
“Let us pray for him that God may welcome him into his Kingdom,” he added.
Benedict XVI died at 95 years old on December 31 in a small former monastery where he had lived after stepping down from the Petrine ministry in 2013.
Pope Francis remembered his predecessor at the New Year’s Day Mass in St. Peter’s Basilica and asked the people to pray for Benedict XVI’s soul.
According to Vatican News, the pope was the first to visit Benedict XVI after his death.
In the pictures released by the Vatican on Sunday, the body of the pope emeritus was seen vested in red liturgical vestments with a miter in the chapel of the Mater Ecclesiae Monastery next to a large crucifix, a nativity scene, and a Christmas tree.
Beginning Monday and for three days until the funeral on Jan. 5, his remains will lay in state in St. Peter’s Basilica for veneration of the faithful.
The pope emeritus was first laud out in the chapel of the Mater Ecclesiae monastery in the Vatican on New Year’s Day, before his body was brought to St. Peter’s Basilica in a private ceremony early Monday morning.
The Vatican said Benedict XVI’s remains will lie in state in the Basilica for veneration of the faithful until his funeral on January 5.
He will be interred in the Vatican crypt in the same spot where Pope John Paul II was buried before his beatification.