Before reading these few pages by Sister Mary, and even before this class, I did not have a good idea of who Pope Benedict XVI was. All I knew was that he was a very intellectual and gentle man from Germany who people loved to listen to. There have been many controversies surrounding Pope Benedict, but people continue to listen to his insightful religious lectures. Now after reading this brief insight by Sister Mary, I have developed a newfound appreciation for this man because of the hardships he experienced early in his life. To overcome these adversities, Pope Benedict relied on his love and friendship with Jesus, the Beloved. He sets a great example for us Christians. I think that all of us have to take the time to learn more about him so we can all develop the appreciation for him like I did. His humbleness and loving character is something that all Christians should take note of.
Pope Benedict XVI’s adolescent years were not so carefree to say the least. From being diagnosed with diphtheria to entering into the seminary with unwelcoming peers to being drafted into the war, it is obvious that young Joseph Ratzinger experienced some hardships in the most important years of his early life. I feel that for all of us, hardships early in life force us to put our life in perspective and from there, make determinations so that we can live our life to the fullest. This is exactly what Pope Benedict XVI did. For example, before entering the seminary, he did not take his studies so seriously due to the fact that he found studying easy. After returning to the seminary after the war, he took his studies seriously and earned the title of Father Joseph Ratzinger. The challenging experiences in between his times at the seminary truly did influence this young man and changed him for the better. Even though the common adolescent might not experience hardships as difficult and severe as Ratzinger did, we can make sense of how challenges in our lives provide windows of...
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