June 24, 2024

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Benedict XVI: A look back at the cat-loving pope’s favorite feline friends

Benedict XVI: A look back at the cat-loving pope’s favorite feline friends

He mentioned that when Ratzinger would wander out of the church, the cats would adhere to him: “They understood him and beloved him. He stayed with them and caressed them for a very long time.”


Chico was a red tabby cat who belonged to the Ratzinger’s neighbors in Pentling, Bavaria immortalized in the illustrated ebook, “Joseph and Chico: The Existence of Pope Benedict XVI as Advised By a Cat.” 

“Chico was a large reddish cat with a great deal of character,” Perego, the author of the children’s reserve, explained to CNA. She reported that she was influenced to compose the ebook although exploring Benedict’s early existence in Bavaria and assembly Chico, whom the intercontinental push have been now referring to as “his cat.”

In the reserve, Chico the cat narrates the everyday living of Joseph Ratzinger from his childhood in Germany to his election as the 265th Roman pontiff. Archbishop Georg Gänswein, the pope’s particular secretary, wrote in the book’s introduction: “The pope also loves cats and all animals since they are creatures of God.”

Chico, who was by now completely developed at the time of Benedict’s election as pope, died in the drop of 2012, in accordance to Perego.


Through Benedict XVI’s apostolic vacation to the United Kingdom in 2010, he frequented the Birmingham Oratory proven by St. John Henry Newman. 

At the oratory, the pope encountered an unanticipated buddy — a fluffy black cat named Pushkin. The oratory cat wore a ribbon with the papal shades, yellow and white, all over his neck for the event. 

Journalists snapped pictures as Pope Benedict stroked the cat’s chin and ears. He stated: “Aren’t you pretty? What is his name? How previous is he?”

Pushkin, who was 10 a long time old at the time, went on to reside a different eight decades and even penned his have memoir, “Pushkin the Pontifical Puss: Tails of an Oratory Cat,” which also information the time he achieved Princess Michael of Kent.

(Story carries on down below)

Contessina and Zorro

Following Benedict XVI retired to Mater Ecclesiae Monastery inside the walls of Vatican Metropolis Point out, he continued to greet some of the cats who lived in the Vatican gardens. Two of the Vaticats in particular designed an perception.

“Contessa and Zorro, two cats that stay in our gardens, occur generally to say hi there to the pope emeritus,” Gänswein told the Italian magazine BenEssere on March 25, 2016.

At a time when the pope emeritus was mainly concealed away from the planet, a picture of Benedict holding the small gray and white cat named Zorro caught the world’s notice.

Contessa, also known by the diminutive, Contessina, was a black and white kitten who was also photographed together with the pope all through his several years of retirement living inside Vatican City’s partitions.