RIP, Pope Emeritus Benedict - Ring Out 2022 with Dies Irae
Okay, I will pick some sweeter tunes, too
I had thought of doing a STUMP 2022 look-back, but then Pope Emeritus Benedict died, and as a Catholic, and a big fan of Requiem masses, I couldn’t let the opportunity pass.
Let us open with a Kyrie….
Dies Irae – the original chant
Some may have noticed that I use the Dies Irae chant for the intro/outro on my podcast – hey, what can I say? I’m a fan! So are a lot of others.
I think the original medieval version is lovely, even if the lyrics are a bit harrowing (and inspired music to match from the likes of Verdi).
And here is a trio of Requiem Masses for the repose of the soul of our Pope Emeritus
Hadyn Requiem – [Michael, the brother who specialized in church music]
Mozart: [Orchestre national de France / James Gaffigan]
Verdi: [Gustavo Dudamel and the Los Angeles Philharmonic]
Some information on the next steps
From The Pillar, where I get my Catholic news: Benedict XVI has died. What happens next?
In its statement announcing Benedict XVI’s death, the Holy See press office said that “further information” would be provided “as soon as possible.”
True to its word, it issued a brief follow-up statement saying that the body of the pope emeritus would lie in St. Peter’s Basilica from Monday, Jan. 2.
Benedict XVI’s death comes during the busy Christmastide period at the Vatican. His successor Pope Francis is due to celebrate First Vespers and recite the Te Deum in St. Peter’s Basilica at 5 p.m. Rome time on Dec. 31, following the Vatican’s New Year’s Eve custom.
Pope Francis is then expected to celebrate Mass in the basilica at 10 a.m. on Jan. 1. The Mass will mark both the Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God, and the 56th World Day of Peace.
The announcement that Benedict XVI’s body will lie in state suggests that the Vatican is, in some respects, following the traditional procedure for the death of a pope.
For example, Benedict XVI’s predecessor John Paul II lay in state in St. Peter’s Basilica from April 4, 2005, until the day of his funeral Mass on April 8, allowing mourners to pay their respects over several days.
There could be some differences between the two events, given that Benedict XVI was a pope emeritus. For example, John Paul II’s body was carried in a long procession to the basilica from the Clementine Hall, accompanied by Gregorian chants.
It is currently unclear whether Benedict XVI’s body will be carried directly from his residence, the Mater Ecclesiae Monastery, to the basilica and whether the journey will be made publicly.
At my parish church this morning, after daily Mass, we prayed a set of requiem prayers (the requiem, Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory Be as a set.) Then we rang the bells.
Ways to commemorate Pope Emeritus Benedict
What the former Pope had been well-known for, of course, was his extensive writing on theological matters, especially to make it accessible for laypeople. It may be easier to find some of his books under his pre-Pope name of Joseph Ratzinger.
Some of his well-known books are:
Jesus of Nazareth, which is actually a three-volume collection: the first volume covers the baptism in the Jordan to Transfiguration, the second volume covers the entrance into Jerusalem to the Resurrection and the third is focused on the infancy narratives in the gospels.
Introduction to Christianity, which is focused on the Apostle’s Creed and elucidating its elements.
That approach became the core of what became the update of the Catechism of the Catholic Church, which he worked on as Cardinal Ratzinger.
Which gives one more way you can commemorate the life of Joseph Ratzinger who became Pope Benedict — you can start The Catechism in a Year podcast on Jan 1, 2023. I just finished Fr. Mike Schmitz’s Bible in a Year podcast today, and am ready to get started on the Catechism — I actually went through it once, when I did RCIA back in 1998-1999.
Back to Verdi:
95 years is a very good run on earth.
May Pope Benedict have received his eternal rest.
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