zum Benedikt Anliegen

Click here

for Benedict’s cause

The early years

Stages of a life:

Pictures of Joseph Ratzinger on display at his birthplace in Marktl am Inn.

A class photo showing the first (left) and second (right) grade at the school in Marktl am Inn in 1934. Joseph Ratzinger, then aged seven, is on the right side, third row, second from the right.

Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger visiting the room where he was born in the Bavarian village of Marktl am Inn in 1927 (photo from 1997). In 1997, Ratzinger was made an honorary citizen.

Letter from the seven-year-old Joseph Ratzinger to the Christ Child at Christmas, on display at the former home of the Ratzinger family in Pentling.

The Ratzinger family in 1938 in Hufschlag, near Traunstein. From left to right: Joseph Ratzinger, aged eleven, his brother Georg, mother Maria, sister Maria, and father Joseph (date of photograph unknown).

Cardinal Michael von Faulhaber lays hands on Joseph Ratzinger during his ordination at Freising Cathedral on June 29, 1951.

First Mass blessing: Joseph Ratzinger (right) and his brother Georg were ordained to the priesthood in Freising along with 42 other young men.

The Ratzinger family after the two brothers’ first Mass on July 8, 1951. From left to right: sister Maria, brother Georg, mother Maria, Joseph, and father Joseph.

The brothers Georg (left) and Joseph (right) Ratzinger with their friend Rupert Berger after their ordination on June 29, 1951 in Freising.

Joseph Ratzinger, chaplain at the parish of St. Martin in the Moosach district of Munich, during a Mass in the mountains near Ruhpolding in July 1951.

The Ratzinger family in Freising in May 1959. From left to right: Joseph Ratzinger, mother Maria, father Joseph, sister Maria, and brother Georg (date of photograph unknown).

Georg Ratzinger, Domkapellmeister at Regensburg Cathedral, Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, and their sister Maria at the International Garden Festival in Munich in 1983.