Minn. masses planned to memorialize Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI

Pope Benedict XVI Celebrates Midnight Mass
Then-Pope Benedict XVI gives Christmas Night Mass at St. Peter's Basilica on Dec. 24, 2009 in Vatican City, Vatican. Benedict, the first pontiff to step down since the 15th century, died on Saturday in Vatican City at age 95.
Franco Origlia | Getty Images file

Services are planned in Minnesota to memorialize Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI, who died Saturday at the age of 95.

The Basilica of St. Mary in Minneapolis will offer prayers beginning at 3 p.m. Sunday during Solemn Vespers. It also plans a Requiem Mass at noon on Thursday, the same day as Benedict’s funeral at St. Peter’s Square in Vatican City.

The Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis also plans to hold a memorial mass for Benedict, scheduled for 5:30 p.m. Wednesday.

Archbishop Bernard Hebda said he was at the Vatican when then-Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger was elevated to pope.

"I had already personally experienced his exceptional kindness and had long admired his world-class intellect but my love and respect for him grew as the world came to know him as a humble and selfless shepherd, with a unique gift for proclaiming the truth with love," said Archbishop Bernard Hebda in a statement.

Benedict named Hebda to serve as a diocesan bishop in 2009.

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