Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI Will Join in the Consecration of Russia and Ukraine

Pope Francis agreed to conduct the consecration of the two countries in response to an urgent request from the Latin rite bishops of Ukraine.

Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI in a 2021 file photo.
Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI in a 2021 file photo. (photo: Courtesy photo / Joseph Ratzinger-Benedict XVI Foundation)

VATICAN CITY — Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI will join with Pope Francis and the bishops of the world in praying for the consecration of Russia and Ukraine on March 25.

He will do so privately, however, and will not be present at the consecration ceremony at St. Peter’s Basilica.

CNA Deutsch, CNA’s German-language sister news agency, confirmed those details Sunday with the retired pope’s personal secretary, Archbishop Georg Gänswein.

"Of course, Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI will join Pope Francis' call in prayer with regard to the consecration of Russia and Ukraine to the Immaculate Heart of Mary,” Archbishop Gänswein wrote in an email to the news agency.

Pope Francis agreed to conduct the consecration of the two countries in response to an urgent request from the Latin rite bishops of Ukraine. The Vatican has since confirmed a March 17 CNA report that the Pope has asked all bishops of the world to join him in the consecration.