Late former Pope Benedict will leave an impact not only because of his theological training but because of his humility, Monsignor Hilary Franco, the adviser at the Permanent Observer Mission of the Holy See to the United Nations told Newsmax on Wednesday.
"He really was so humble, and he made such an impact, not only in the church but on the world," Franco told Newsmax's "Wake Up America."
Franco is in Italy this week, where he attended "the beginning of the visitation of the mortal remains of my good friend, Pope Benedict" on Monday, and said he was impressed by the crowds of people arriving to pay their respects.
"We had almost 65,000 people, and today it's going to be almost the same until tomorrow morning when I will be present at the funeral," Franco commented.
The monsignor and author of "Six Popes: A Son of the Church Remembers," his memoir of service under Popes John XXIII, Paul VI, John Paul I, John Paul II, Benedict XVI, and Francis, Wednesday recalled Benedict under his given name, Joseph Ratzinger, as being "kind of almost timid."
"I have known Cardinal Ratzinger for a long time," said Franco. "I was 26 years serving in the Vatican, you know, taking care of the English-speaking world, and I used to see him all the time, moving from his residence which was just across from the main St Peter's Square. He would go to his office, so for 27 years, he did this. That's all he wanted — to serve the church, to serve the world, and he was so humble."
Franco said he mentions in his book that he doesn't like the movie "The Two Popes," which details Benedict and the then-future Pope Francis working to find common ground for the Catholic Church, as it doesn't reflect Benedict's humility about serving as the pontiff.
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Sandy Fitzgerald ✉
Sandy Fitzgerald has more than three decades in journalism and serves as a general assignment writer for Newsmax covering news, media, and politics.
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