VATICAN CITY — The Vatican on Sunday shared the first photos of Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI since his death on Dec. 31.
Benedict’s mortal remains have been laid in the chapel of the Mater Ecclesiae Monastery, the Pope Emeritus’ home after his resignation, until they will be brought to St. Peter’s Basilica for public viewing on Jan. 2.
Benedict XVI is dressed in red and gold vestments and wearing a gold miter. Popes are traditionally dressed in red for their funerals.
The former pope has his rosary in his folded hands.
The photos, the first of the deceased Benedict to be released, were taken on the morning of Jan. 1.
Benedict XVI will lie in state in St. Peter’s Basilica from Jan. 2-4. His funeral Mass will take place in the Vatican square on the morning of Jan 5.
The funeral will be solemn, but sober, Vatican spokesman Matteo Bruni said.
After the funeral Mass, Benedict XVI’s remains will be entombed in the Vatican crypt, under St. Peter’s Basilica.
Bruni told journalists on Jan. 1 that some of the people closest to Benedict, likely those who worked for him in his household, will view the body at the Vatican monastery on Sunday.