The Vatican’s press office has confirmed that just two formal state delegations, from Italy and Germany, would attend Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI’s burial.
Religion Nigeria previously reported that Pope Benedict XVI stepped down due to ill health for over a decade before his death on Saturday, December 31, 2022.
He was the first Pope to resign since Gregory XII in 1415, and his resignation in 2013 happened after he had governed the Catholic Church for a total of less than eight years.
For his latter years, Benedict resided at the Mater Ecclesiae convent inside the Vatican gates.
Benedict, born in Germany but formerly known as Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, has been a resident of Italy since 1981, when he moved there.
It was announced on December 31 by the Holy See Press Office that delegates from both countries would be present for Thursday’s burial.
On Monday morning, both Italian President Sergio Mattarella and Italian Prime Minister Geogia Meloni paid their homage to the late pope in St. Peter’s Basilica, where his body will lie in state until January 4.