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The College of Cardinals (led by then-Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger), various dignitaries worldwide, worldwide Catholics The funeral of Pope John Paul II was held on 8 April 2005, six days after his death on 2 April. Also for the first time ever, the head of the Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church, Patriarch Abune Paulos, attended a papal funeral.
He spoke in Italian, first greeting the many political figures and religious leaders that had gathered, and then told the story of how the young Karol had answered the Lord's call, and became a priest after the persecution of the Nazis, the answer of the command: "Follow me!"
Cardinals, at left, wearing red robes, and bishops attend Pope John Paul II's funeral Mass at St. Peter's Square, in the Vatican, April 8, 2005. This copy is for your personal non-commercial use only. Once the funeral ends, the pallbearers carry the coffin (containing the other two) through the basilica’s “door of death.” A bell tolls once to mark the start of the burial process. Pope John Paul II's coffin is taken to the grottos beneath St. Peter's Basilica, at the Vatican, April 8, 2005. Unable to navigate the crowds on the ground, the Pope … Cardinal Ratzinger and the concelebrating cardinals gathered around the altar to consecrate the bread and wine.
These open-air ceremonies allow thousands of mourners to attend. Church officials have developed these rituals over centuries, ensuring they reflect Catholic beliefs about death and the afterlife. For example, according to Cardinal Muller, the Church won’t cremate popes because “Belief in the resurrection of the flesh is fundamental,” adding “a human cadaver is not trash.” In other words, the three coffins are meant to protect the pope’s body. It's totally free to use. After the private ceremony, the doors of St. Peter's Basilica were opened while dignitaries were seated. Those present sang "Salve Regina" or "Hail Holy Queen.". A pope’s funeral technically occurs during an extended mourning period. The Eucharist was then taken to the congregation in St. Peter's Square to be distributed among those present.
Although papal funeral traditions and customs have changed somewhat throughout history, in general, the process of mourning a pope involves certain consistent rituals. expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of Toronto
Although they traditionally involve a funeral mass, specific details can and do vary on a case-by-case basis. While the nature of papal funerals sometimes changes for various reasons (such as a pope making specific requests), the funeral usually involves these traditions: Before a pope’s burial, the dean of the College of Cardinals typically delivers a funeral mass. The wooden casket bearing the remains of Pope John Paul II is prepared during his funeral Mass at St. Peter's Square, in the Vatican, April 8, 2005.
 Before being laid in the coffin, Archbishops Marini and Stanisław Dziwisz had the honour of placing a white silk veil over the face of the pope (a tradition started by Leo XIII). After the death of Pope John Paul II on April 2, 2005 in Vatican City, and before official invitations were sent by the College of Cardinals, almost 200 countries expressed interest in sending representatives to the funeral of Pope John Paul II.
Altogether, the Mass of Requiem was deemed at the time to be the largest gathering of heads of state in world history, exceeding the gathering at the state funeral of Sir Winston Churchill in London in 1965 and the funeral of Josip Broz Tito in 1980. It also gives mourners the opportunity to view the deceased pope before they are to be buried.
The body of John Paul II was dressed in his vestments and moved to the Clementine Hall on the third level (considered the second floor) of the Apostolic Palace on 3 April.
The part of the Mass of Requiem called the Liturgy of the Eucharist began. The cardinal's last words were about the end of Pope John Paul II's life: Some construed the ending of the homily to mean that the pope had already entered into heaven, and had become a saint..
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Official diplomatic delegations from other nations began arriving at the same time.
Congregants replied in chant, "Praise to you, Lord Jesus Christ.". As the pope must be buried between the fourth and sixth day after his death, Friday was chosen as the last possible date. Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger celebrated the Mass of Requiem on 8 April at 10:00 am CEST (08:00 UTC), by virtue of his office as Dean of the College of Cardinals. Pallbearers carry the coffin of Pope John Paul II, during his funeral Mass at St. Peter's Square, in the Vatican, April 8, 2005.
German Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger blesses Pope John Paul II's coffin during the funeral Mass in St. Peter's Square, the Vatican, April 8, 2005. The ceremony ends when mourners have received Holy Communion and the dean of the College of Cardinals has dismissed them with a blessing rite. Applause rang out as John Paul's plain cypress coffin, adorned with a cross and an "M" for the Virgin Mary, was brought out for the Mass. Among the most familiar faces worldwide were the President of the United States and two former presidents of the United States, the Prime Minister of Italy, the current and former Presidents of Brazil, the President of Poland, the President of France, the President of Ireland, the Taoiseach of Ireland, the King and Queen of Spain, the King and Queen of the Belgians, the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, the Chancellor of Germany and the President of Germany, the Prince of Wales (who postponed his wedding to Camilla Parker-Bowles by 24 hours, to attend), the Prime Minister of Canada, the King and Queen of Jordan, the President of Afghanistan, and the Vice-President of India. Cardinal Ratzinger also told of John Paul's life as a bishop, cardinal, and pope, frequently applying scripture to the pope's life.
A first Mass of Repose, such as is offered for anyone baptised in the Catholic Church, commemorating the sending of the soul to God, was led by Cardinal Angelo Sodano, Cardinal Secretary of State, on 3 April 2005, the day after the death of the Pope. Bishop Rudolf Voderholzer, who led the service, told mourners that Benedict was following the mass online. It really struck me how, amidst all the splendor of St. Peter’s Square, John Paul II had this simple wooden casket.
For the past few centuries, most popes have specified they would like to be buried beneath St. Peter’s Basilica. It was the first time a cardinal patriarch of an Eastern Catholic Church offered a novemdiales Mass, in his own rite, for a pope. What happens if the president doesn't accept the election results? Death is part of life. Its lyrics proclaimed, "Out of the depths I cry to you, O Lord; Lord, hear my voice.". This coffin was adorned with three bronze plaques: a simple cross at the head of the coffin, a middle plaque with the Pope's name and the length of his life and pontificate, and a third with Pope John Paul II's personal coat of arms at the foot.
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